Friday, June 29, 2012

John Pardoe returns to Westminster

Cornwall Community News reports that John Pardoe, Liberal MP for North Cornwall between 1966 and 1979, visited Westminster today with his wife and grandson.

The online magazine says:
His varied career saw him standing against Margaret Thatcher in Finchley, leading the Treasury field during the Lib-Lab pact, and finally losing out to David Steel in a nasty little political scrap in which he was accused of donning a toupe. 
The former Cambridge footlights comedian also stood out in political life for his unflagging support for Jeremy Thorpe, a loyalty widely believed to have cost him his seat.
It goes on to quote the constituency's current MP Dan Rogerson:
"As a local MP, John set a very high standard for the rest of us to follow, and he is still well loved and remembered by people across North Cornwall."
Along with David Penhaligon, John Pardoe was my first Liberal hero. Had I been a party member in 1976 , I should have certainly voted for him in the party leadership election.

Pardoe was more charismatic than David Steel and gave the impression of being more interested in ideas, even if his Liberalism was perhaps less well rooted that Steel's.

The website's reference to a toupe, incidentally, is a reference to that party leadership contest. Paul Linford will tell you all about it.

And the website also wins our Bad Pun of the Week Award for its headline on this story: "PARDOE THE FURNITURE".

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