Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Liberal England in 2010: Part 1

The first six months of the year, as seen on this blog. Part 2 is here.


The connections between rock music and the Shropshire hills were an early concern. The post cited one musician who recalled hanging out with a lethal combination of rock and roll A-list and Shropshire farmers.

Nick Clegg's Demos pamphlet The Liberal Moment inspired a series of posts, which were the source for a review article for Liberator.

Talking of Nevill Holt, I delved into the strange history of the prep school at Nevill Holt, the house that is the model for Bonkers Hall. I later had an email from the mother of a former pupil who said she could vouch for the truth of every story except the coffins - and she imagines those were found when the hall was turned back into a private house.

Mind you, the later rumour that Ozzy Osbourne was to buy the place does look to have been unfounded.

I complained that laughing at the Daily Mail too often takes the place of constructive thought among Liberals.

The early lives of David Dimbleby and Hilary Benn were investigated and I argued that the Victorians were less Victorian than we imagine.

And, long before Michael Wood made it famous, I visited Kibworth.

Did you know there used to be nuclear missiles stationed near Market Harborough? Well you do now.

Another question: Will libertarian bloggers ever grow up?

As I rather fell out of love with the Britblog Roundup - one fellow host wanted to choose all the links himself, another slagged off any submission that did not reflect his Toryboy views - February saw the launch of a new feature: Six of the Best.

I was invited into the old Kingdom Hall in Market Harborough a few days before it was pulled down.


Lib Dems should argue with the people they almost agree with, I argued.

Twenty years of Lord Bonkers were marked by a Liberator article in two parts (namely part 1 and part 2).

House Points argued that the Conservatives are ungovernable and set out Calder's three Laws of Politics.

I was asked down to London for the ITV Ask the Chancellors debate and liveblogged it from the green room. In retrospect, the evening marked the high point of Cablemania.


As the general election campaign gathered pace, I speculated on why it was that Why Gene Hunt had become a national hero, but Labour didn't get him.

My moaning about the Guardian predates its turning against the Coalition: "these days the loyal Guardian reader is obliged to believe that a boy of 14 is perfectly capable of interviewing someone applying to teach at his school but cannot be trusted to look after a goldfish."

I mourned the the frankieboyleisation of society and one of my Saturday walks took me to Shortwood Lodge, near Lamport.

Harborough Liberal Democrats opened their election HQ in St Mary's Road, Market Harborough.

Meanwhile, the first televised leaders' debate was a contest between Flashman, Tom Brown and Sigismund the Mad Maths Master.


I complained about BBC Radio 4's election coverage. There was plenty of satire but no reports from the hustings.

When David Cameron made his "big, open and comprehensive" offer, I argued that the Liberal Democrats should accept it in some form.

I spent a day in a Westminster with no government - and upset the gorillas in suits who had appeared at Cowley Street.

Meanwhile in the Ukraine, the Clegg family pyramid still stands. And in Tur Langton you will find a fine Victorian church.


In Melton Mowbray I found the Boat Inn closed and reflected on the town's canal history. And in the Guardian I caught Polly Toynbee making an elementary mistake on taxation.

Then I went off to the Lowdham Book Festival in Nottinghamshire to speak about blogging.

And another Liberator article looked back on the leaders' debates.

Now read Part 2.

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