Sunday, May 28, 2023

Lord Bonkers' Diary: A chain of beacons would bring news of Liberal triumphs

We used to count overnight in Harborough's local elections, but this year the powers that be waited until the next day. I think that was a shame. 

When I was on the council here, the officer in charge of our elections said he would like to see the parliamentary elections here count overnight too, but they were in the hands of Oadby and Wigston council who preferred to count on the Friday even then.

I sense that Lord Bonkers would agree with him.


I can remember when every council for miles around counted its votes overnight. A chain of beacons would bring news of Liberal triumphs and Liberal defeats: an unexpected victory in Brixworth; a slew of gains on Wigston Urban District Council; disaster at Ashby de la Zouch. I was once convinced we had taken Holland County Council, only to find I was watching the distress flares from a Liberian-registered tanker on Rutland Water. 

Nowadays most councils count the next day, and this year the results are worth waiting for: Oadby & Wigston and Hinckley & Bosworth are held; gains are made in Harborough and Leicester. Above all, we are now the largest party in Rutland, having polled almost half the popular vote. 

The editor of Wainwright’s West Country Marginals rings to tell me that it is now possible to walk from the Tamar to the tidal Thames without leaving territory governed by the Liberal Democrats. I observe that, given the state to which the Conservative enemy has reduced our railways, this may well be the quickest way of getting there.

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

Earlier this week...

1 comment:

Matt Pennell said...

It's lovely to see Ashby de la Zouch namechecked in the Lord's diary. This small town in Leicestershire is known to computer gamers of a certain vintage as the home of Ultimate Play the Game and Rare - pioneers in 3D-animated games for the Spectrum/Amstrad/BBC computers and later Nintendo consoles. (Rare is now owned by Microsoft, produces games for the XBox and is based in Twycross)

I should imagine after establishing a chain of beacons that Lord Bonkers would like to push technology further, just like Ultimate/Rare, and open up the telegram service to the smallest villages and hamlets across the Vale of Belvoir.