Tuesday, December 01, 2020

Lord Bonkers 30 years ago: How we won Eastbourne

What, I hear you ask, was Lord Bonkers doing in December 1990? 

The answer is that he was celebrating a famous Liberal Democrat by-election victory. David Bellotti, incidentally, soon turned out to be part of a circus act called 'The Flying Bellotti Brothers that often turned up in these diaries.

I am not sure I would make jokes about Zimmer frames now that my mother uses one to walk, but Lord Bonkers was young and foolish in those days.


To Eastbourne to help young Bellotti deliver a 'Thank You Focus'. (In my day the voters would queue for hours to thank the successful candidate, but autre temps, autre mœurs, I suppose.)

How clearly I recall my last visit to this celebrated resort! I presented myself bright and early at the committee rooms and was asked to drive some pensioners to the polls. A menial task for a man of my experience, you might think, but we Liberals are nothing if not democratic and I went about it with a will.

Fortunately, I had brought with me my collapsible travelling horsewhip and this eased matters considerably. the elderly voters made a terrible fuss and were constantly tripping over each other's Zimmer frames, but I got them all into the booths eventually.

I was proud to be able to say I had played my part in getting the Liberal vote out.

Lord Bonkers was Liberal MP for Rutland South West, 1906-10.

1 comment:

Simon said...

Glad to hear the part of that joke you now feel uneasy about were the zimmer frames!