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Welcome to East Midlands Liberal Democrats Website

The Liberal Democrats exist to build and safeguard a fair, free and open society, in which we seek to balance the fundamental values of liberty, equality and community, and in which no-one shall be enslaved by poverty, ignorance or conformity.

East Midlands consists of the counties of Derbyshire, Leicestershire, Lincolnshire, Northamptonshire, Nottinghamshire and Rutland

General Election Poster - Don't let Britain take wrong turn

WHAT THE HELL HAVE THE LIB DEMS DONE

Recent updates

  • Trent Bridge
    Article: Mar 4, 2015
    In Gainsborough Standard

    Councillors are calling for a second Trent Bridge crossing to be built between Gainsborough and Beckingham as they believe the current crossing is no longer fit for purpose.

    The current bridge was originally built in 1791 and widened in 1962 with a concrete deck over the original bridge.

    The Liberal Democrat candidate for Bassetlaw, Leon Duveen, said: "At least one of the concrete slabs has begun to work lose and the road surface, which was last re-laid only about seven years ago, is also wearing out."

  • Article: Mar 4, 2015

    Liberal Democrat Communities Minister Stephen Williams is urging people to safeguard their local pubs by listing them as a community asset.

    As part of the recently expanded Community Rights, people can nominate buildings or blocks of land as 'assets of community value', giving communities a greater say in how their areas develop.

  • War on Drugs
    Article: Mar 4, 2015

    Nick Clegg has today confirmed the Liberal Democrat manifesto will contain the most far-reaching drug reform policies ever put forward by a major political party ahead of an election.

    He made the announcement at an event at Chatham House alongside entrepreneur Richard Branson, a member of the Global Commission on Drug Policy.

  • key_waste_(800x450).jpeg
    Article: Mar 4, 2015

    Liberal Democrats have announced plans to tackle industrial fly tipping and protect the environment for future generations.

    As part of our plans to introduce Five Green Laws in the next Parliament, Liberal Democrats have unveiled proposals for a Zero Waste Bill.

    The Bill is intended to boost the number of organisations prosecuted for illegal dumping while also introducing a higher, more consistent level of fines for fly-tippers who damage Britain's environment.

  • Nick Clegg
    Article: Mar 4, 2015

    Writing in the Guardian, Liberal Democrat Leader Nick Clegg and Richard Branson describe the war on drugs an "abject failure."

    Nick and Richard write that it is time for fresh thinking and ask politicians to embrace the call for reform.

    You can read the article in full below.

    By any standard, the global war on drugs has been an abject failure.

    Since the 'war' was declared by President Nixon in 1971, we have spent over a trillion US dollars trying to eradicate drugs from our societies. Yet the criminal market continues to grow, driving unimaginable levels of profit for organised crime.

    We devote vast police, criminal justice and military resources to the problem, including the incarceration of people on a historically unprecedented scale.

    In many parts of the world, drug violence has become endemic. On the day that Mexican president Nieto is visiting the UK, we should remember the estimated 100,000 people killed in Mexico alone since 2006.

    Yet tragically, the sum total of enforcement efforts against drug supply over the past 40 years has been zero. Efforts at reducing demand have been similarly fruitless.

    Here in the UK, one third of adults have taken illegal drugs and the gangs are doing a roaring trade. The problem simply isn't going away.

    It's no wonder that countries around the world are rethinking their approach. Former prime ministers and presidents are now admitting the mistakes of the past and pushing for change, through the Global Commission on Drug Policy and other bodies.

    Serving politicians are increasingly speaking out, with President Santos of Colombia leading the way. Senior law enforcement officers are starting to question the idea that we can arrest ourselves out of this.

    Perhaps the most startling change has been in the United States, the country that invented the drugs war, where four states have recently voted to tax and regulate cannabis sales.

    Closer to home, Portugal, the Netherlands, Spain, Switzerland, the Czech Republic and Denmark have all introduced reforms aimed at reducing harm and cutting crime, ranging from heroin prescribing to decriminalisation.

    The West is undergoing a tectonic shift; but the UK seems oblivious to it.

    And yet we desperately need better solutions in this country. One in six children of school age are still taking drugs; 2,000 people die each year in drug-related incidents; the use of unregulated 'legal highs' is rampant.

    At the same time the police are stopping and searching half a million people a year for possession of drugs, prosecutions of users are close to record levels, and prison cells are still used for people whose only crime is the possession of a substance to which they are addicted.

    This costs a lot of money - money which could be better spent on treatment and on redoubling our efforts to disrupt supply. And it wrecks the lives of 70,000 people a year who receive a criminal record for possession and then find themselves unable to get a job.

    As an investment, the war on drugs has failed to deliver any returns. If it were a business, it would have been shut down a long time ago. This is not what success looks like.

    The idea of eradicating drugs from the world by waging a war on those who use them is fundamentally flawed for one simple reason: it doesn't reduce drug taking.

    The Home Office's own research, commissioned by Liberal Democrats in government and published a few months ago, found that "there is no apparent correlation between the 'toughness' of a country's approach and the prevalence of adult drug use".

    This devastating conclusion means that we are wasting our scarce resources, and on a grand scale.

    The standard political response to this is to say that we must stay the course - that if we arrest a few more people, seize a few more shipments, then 'victory' remains in our grasp.

    And conversely, that if we dare to do anything differently then we are playing Russian roulette with people's lives. The gulf between the rhetoric and the reality could not be greater.

    The status quo is a colossal con perpetrated on the public by politicians who are too scared to break the taboo.

    So what is the alternative? For this, we should look to Portugal which removed criminal penalties for drug possession in 2001. Portugal's reforms have not - as many predicted - led to an increase in drug use.

    Instead, they have allowed resources to be re-directed towards the treatment system, with dramatic reductions in addiction, HIV infections and drug-related deaths.

    Drugs remain illegal and socially unacceptable, as they should be, but drug users are dealt with through the civil rather than the criminal law.

    Anyone who is arrested for drug possession is immediately assessed and sent for treatment or education. If they fail to engage, they have to pay a fine.

    The Portuguese system works, and on an issue as important as this, where lives are at stake, governments cannot afford to ignore the evidence.

    We should set up pilots to test and develop a British version of the Portuguese model. The evidence suggests it will be cheaper, more effective at reducing harm, and would allow the police to focus their attention where it should be, on the criminal gangs that supply the drugs.

    Now is the time for politicians of all parties to count the costs of four decades of failure, and embrace the call for reform. If we really want effective solutions to drug markets and to the harm caused by drug use, it will take political courage and fresh thinking.

    Nick Clegg MP and Richard Branson

  • Councillor David Bill MBE
    Article: Mar 4, 2015

    Local Lib Dems have welcomed the news that scrap metal thefts have fallen by a third in the past year - combatting unscrupulous thieves targeting churches, desecrating war memorials and causing disruption by stealing electric cables and metal from railway lines.

    Latest figures show there were 40,680 metal thefts in England and Wales in 2013/14 - down from 59,788 in the previous 12 months.

  • Polling station
    Event: March 21, 2015 9:00 AM - 5:00 PM
    Ashfield Liberal Democrats HQ 84-86 Outram Street Sutton-in-Ashfield NG17 4FS

    Learn How to run a Polling Day Office

    The Digital Team and Department of Elections and Field are running a training workshop in Ashfield so that you can benefit from experience instead of having to reinvent the wheel on 7 May.

    The workshop will be run at Ashfield Office on March 21, 2015 at 9am - 5pm

  • Bell Street1
    Article: Mar 3, 2015
    By Bill Boulter

    After the official opening of this new shopping area just before Christmas, the Ward Councillors have had an increasing number of residents contacting them regarding the large number of vehicles abusing the traffic signs and driving along Bell Street during the pedestrian times of 10am and 4pm.

    The County Highways Officers have acknowledged that drivers are not prepared to follow the traffic signs put up in Bell Street without the raising of the bollard on a daily basis. These drivers are putting people's lives in danger by accessing Bell Street during the restricted times.

  • The Truth on Labour's Plans
    Article: Mar 3, 2015
    By National Liberal Democrats

    Labour's plans to cap tuition fees would wreck the financial sustainability of universities, reduce the support for disadvantaged students and benefit only the richest.

    We learned this lesson the hard way but we now have a system that works, with university funding made fair and sustainable by Liberal Democrats.

  • Article: Mar 3, 2015

    Liberal Democrats have announced plans to introduce a new Green Homes Bill which would insulate up to 10 million homes by 2025.

    Under the plans set out for the next Parliament, homeowners would also be offered a Council Tax discount of at least £100 a year for ten years for making their homes greener.

  • Michael Mullaney at Autumn Conference 2014
    Article: Mar 3, 2015

    Hinckley and Bosworth Councillor Michael Mullaney has welcomed the news that the independent body which advises the Government on the National Minimum Wage is to recommend that it be increased by 3%.

    The above-inflation rise would take the adult rate from £6.50 to 6.70 an hour, the biggest rise since 2008.

  • Derby North Candidate Lucy Care discusses recycling with local residents
    Article: Mar 3, 2015

    Derby's Labour council are removing blue bins from inner-city areas.

    This will see more rubbish going to landfill and damaging the environment instead of being recycled. It will cost council tax payers more than ten times as much for the same waste!

    Derby Lib Dems support recycling and want to put more resources into helping people recycle their rubbish rather than punishing people for honest mistakes.

  • Event: March 7, 2015 10:15 AM
    Derby Office, 2 East Midlands, Liberal Democrats, Great Northern Court, Great Northern Road, Derby. DE1 1LR

    The March 2015 meeting of the Executive Committee will be held on

    Saturday 7 March 2015

    at

    Derby Office, 2 East Midlands Liberal Democrats, Great Northern Court, Great Northern Road, Derby DE1 1LR

    at 10.15am - Note early start

    The agenda, minutes of the last meeting and other documentation can be downloaded here when available.

  • key_cycling_invest.gif
    Article: Mar 2, 2015

    Liberal Democrat Leader and Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg has announced £115m in funding for cycling projects across the UK.

    The money will be split between eight major cities, with each using the money to improve the safety and accessibility of their cycle routes.

    This covers:

    • £22m for Birmingham, with plans to build the infrastructure needed to double the number of cycling journeys made there by 2023.
    • £19m for Bristol, with a proposal to improve the city's cycling network and routes across urban areas and Bath.
    • £6m for Cambridge, with plans for new bridge over the River Cam, segregated cycling routes in the city and more links in South Cambridgeshire.
    • £22m for Leeds, with plans to expand its current cycle superhighway and improve links to Bradford, Huddersfield, Wakefield and York.
    • £22m for Manchester, with plans to develop more than 45km of new or improved cycle routes as phase two of its Cycle City plan.
    • £10.6m for Newcastle, intended to make it easier for cyclists to get to work from in and around the city.
    • £8.4m for Norwich, with plans to redesign 31km of key cycle routes.
    • £3.m for Oxford, intended to provide better links between the city centre and south east of the city.
  • Garth (Bill) A Boulter
    Article: Mar 2, 2015
    By Kevin Loydall

    The New Year saw the diggers breaking the ground to make way for the foundations of the NEW 6 LANE SWIMMING POOL and leisure facilities in Wigston.

    This new pool and gym facilities will provide customers with first class leisure facilities for the next 40 years.

    Ward Councillors Bill Boulter, Helen and Kevin Loydall were extremely pleased to see that the containers which hold the workmen's' offices and the diggers have at last moved onto the site next to Guthlaxton College and started the work.

  • Article: Mar 2, 2015
    By Northampton Lib Dems

    Northampton Liberal Democrats are supporting the camapign to save the Tea Room at Delapre Abbey.

    You can follow the link here.

  • Secretary of State Ed Davey
    Article: Mar 2, 2015
    In Liberal Democrat Voice

    An Independent on Sunday editorial yesterday acknowledged the contribution made by the Liberal Democrats to furthering the green agenda while in government. They give Nick Clegg and Ed Davey the credit for driving it forward in the face of opposition from our coalition partners, who come in for some criticism:

  • Article: Mar 2, 2015

    Liberal Democrat Leader and Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg will host a special radio show tonight (Monday 2 March) on LBC, discussing mental health care in the UK.

    Nick will be on air from 7pm for the one-off show called State of Mind.

    He will interview people with mental health conditions, clinicians, business leaders and a chief constable. He will also be taking comments and questions from callers.

  • Article: Mar 2, 2015

    Liberal Democrat Chief Secretary to the Treasury Danny Alexander has announced details of a plan to raise an extra £1bn from a supplementary corporation tax charge applied to banks to help finish the job of eliminating the deficit.

    The supplementary charge will be in addition to the existing Bank Levy.

  • Nations outline map of UK
    Article: Mar 2, 2015
    By Nick Hopkinson

    Doctors are warning about the outbreak of a spreading disease called Euroscepticism which surveys show affect 39% of the UK population.

    Although the symptoms are initially relatively innocuous, such as a proclivity to make regular false statements about Europe, there is growing concern about those seriously afflicted. Recently a speaker in a London conference claimed he did not have horns, became overly emotional, shouted about the loss of UK sovereignty, and started foaming at the mouth. In a press release yesterday, the British Medical Society added its weight noting "We are increasingly concerned about the growing incidence of the Eurosceptic disease, and its contagious potential". Elsewhere many fear its possible side effects such as the loss of jobs, foreign investment, UK political influence, and access to the Single Market and EU-wide health care and social benefits.

    The growing incidence of Euroscepticism has led researchers to investigate the origins of the disease. The first major recorded incident was in the House of Commons in 1990 when the then Prime Minister appeared unable to extend her vocabulary beyond the word 'No'. However, some trace the onset of the disease to a speech in Bruges in 1988. Since then Euroscepticism has spread rapidly throughout the UK. It is prevalent amongst tabloid newspaper readers who readily believe misleading and untrue stories about Europe, those sentimental about an idealised British past which never existed, men who want the other half of the population to protect their virtue by cleaning under fridges, and men in pin-stripped suits who want to end gun control and like being filmed smoking cigarettes with a pint in pubs.

    Medical professionals have repeatedly warned about the dangers of smoking and drinking, and the prognosis for the uncontrolled use of guns could prove immediately fatal. However, for many the unquestioning consumption of tabloid rubbish might be the final nail in the coffin. Fred Smith, Chairman of the British Undertakers Association, notes "Most of those afflicted by terminal Euroscepticism are over 60 - their current high states of unfounded emotion on top of pre-existing symptoms could mean we are temporarily unable to keep up with demand. We rely on a regular flow of business, but cannot cope with high levels of new business, especially at a time of widespread flooding. The problem is not gay, but grave."

    Opthamologists have identified a particularly virulent strain of the Eurosceptic virus amongst 95 'swivel-eyed' Members of Parliament in Westminster. This strain presents particular medical challenges, which some experts believe can only be remedied by a painful surgical splitting procedure. They are however at odds with the Prime Minister who has argued a referendum on the UK's EU membership is the best cure. Independent observers though doubt an unlikely referendum can remedy this terminal strain.

    Some fear those seriously afflicted by Euroscepticism might even start climbing to the tops of buildings in order to avoid the floods and in so doing drape themselves in the Union Flag, potentially leading to a loss of balance and altitude. Mental health professionals are therefore urgently recommending the public to take a reality check, and spend 30 minutes a week exercising their eyes over facts, rather than fiction, about the European Union. Campaigners are also urging political leaders to start telling the truth about Europe.
    So what more can be done to stop this dangerous disease from spreading? Those still unaffected in the private sector, unions and NGOs should design, fund and promote a national disease prevention strategy and information campaign. The Labour Party has yet to identify Euroscepticism as a major threat, citing its containment in the North. Many though fear major outbreaks, such as in Westminster, could yet contaminate the rest of country thereby preventing, at least English, citizens from realising a healthy and prosperous future.

  • Cllrs Michael Mullaney, Charlotte Green and Michael Gould campaign for re-opening of Elmesthorpe station
    Article: Mar 2, 2015

    Campaigners have persuaded Hinckley and Bosworth Borough Council to back a campaign to re-open a local railway station.

    Local Lib Dem councillors have been campaigning for the re-opening of Elmesthorpe railway station as an additional public transport option for commuters in areas such as Earl Shilton and Barwell.

  • Steve Webb
    Article: Mar 2, 2015
    In Liberal Democrat Voice

    Steve Webb, pensions minister, is interviewed in the Observer in the run-up to the big pensions change:

    Plans to give millions of people powers to get access to their pensions savings from 6 April are a calculated risk, the minister in charge of the biggest pensions shakeup in decades has admitted.

    On what is being called "pension freedom day", millions of people will be able to do whatever they want with their pension pot, instead of having to buy an annuity. This liberalisation is being widely hailed as the biggest shakeup of the UK pensions system since the old-age pension was introduced in 1908.

    However, amid warnings that people may leave themselves short of money in their old age, the pensions minister, Steve Webb, concedes in an interview with the Observer on Sunday that the plans come with some risk. "We wouldn't be doing it if we thought it was a disaster, but you do take a risk when you trust people with their own money," he says. "Paternalism feels safer, but look where paternalism got us. It got us mandatory annuities and a lot of dissatisfied people. Of course you take a chance when you set people free but, as a liberal, that's why I'm in politics."

  • Register to Vote
    Article: Mar 1, 2015

    NOTTINGHAM LIBERAL DEMOCRATS

    VOTER FRAUD

    Nottingham Liberal Democrats note:

    1. During the recent local elections workers from another party were seen walking around with handfuls of polling cards.
    2. At all recent elections we have obtained evidence that significant numbers people who are out of the country long term or dead have voted.
    3. Activists from another party have been seen collecting postal votes together.
    4. Postal voting removes the guaranteed secrecy of the ballot.
    5. Anyone can register to vote - even nonexistent people as no checks are carried out.
    6. Anyone turning up to vote, with or without a poll card, will be allowed to vote.
    7. Nottinghamshire Police will not investigate fraudulent voting. They will only look at evidence presented to them.
    8. The Electoral Commission will investigate, but require evidence.
  • Article: Mar 1, 2015
    By Paul Walter in Liberal Democrat Voice

    On the BBC's World at One on Friday, Vince Cable was interviewed by Mark Mardell. You can hear the interview by clicking on the box below, and the full transcript follows:


    Mardell: Well, Vince Cable is the Business Secretary and the MP for Twickenham from where he joins us now. The current system isn't working is it, so it does need to be changed?

    Cable: (The current system) is working very well and it doesn't need to be changed. It's working well on all different levels. We've got growing numbers of people want to go to university. We've got exceptionally large numbers of people from disadvantaged backgrounds going to university and applying to go to university. Universities are very well funded relative to other organisations that depend on the public sector, which means they can provide quality education. And we've got a repayment system, which Martin Lewis very eloquently described a few minutes ago, is effectively operating like a fair form of graduate tax where higher earning graduates are paying more and those that earn under £21,000 don't pay anything.

    Mardell: And the Higher Education Commission said it was the worst of both worlds - everybody thinks they are getting a bad deal.

    Cable: Well the Higher Education thing is one think tank with its own political agenda. If you get away from the politicians, and obviously we are going to criticise each other, and you look at a respected international body like the OECD who have done a comparative study of higher education across the developed world: Their conclusion was that Britain has the best in Europe - it is the only one that is financially sustainable, and it's achieving all our objectives of getting more people who want to into higher education, and particularly people who haven't historically been able to, and is generating good quality graduates and getting them to pay on a progressive basis.

    Mardell: But we've heard that Labour's figures add up as an alternative to what you've got, there's nothing wrong with it, is there?

    Cable: There is a lot wrong with it, and what is particularly - and I use the word carefully - but it is fraudulent about it….

    Mardell: That's a very serious charge…

    Cable: It is. Because this tax on pensioners will not go to universities, it will go into the treasury and we know from all past experience the treasury will pocket the money, it will be used to reduce the deficit. There is no guarantee that that money goes to universities. Under our current system the money automatically goes to universities. So that, under the student tuition system and the graduate contribution, universities benefit directly. They would not under Labour's system. It depends entirely on the discretion of future chancellors.

    Mardell: Of course, your party has a tortured history in this business…

    Cable: It has, yes.

    Mardell: …and Ed Miliband said directly that tuition fees - the history of that - was one of the reasons that young people have such little faith in politics.

    Cable: I think he is right on that particular point. And my party has a very tortuous history on it, and we've suffered badly - politically - as a result of making a pledge that we weren't able to keep. But we're not the only party that's been in this position…

    Mardell: But I mean Nick Clegg said that he was sorry…

    Cable: Let me just finish the point - the Labour party has twice made pledges on tuition fees they've had to abandon. The Tories also had a free tuition policy that they quietly dropped. So we've all been in this space. And the thing is, as Martin Lewis very eloquently said in his contribution, we should all grow up and all learn from experience. And Ed Miliband's just taking us and his party backwards.

    Mardell: Nick Clegg said that he was sorry. You don't sound very sorry. You seem to be saying that the saying that the system is working and you're glad you changed.

    Cable: Nick Clegg, rightly, and we all, apologised for the pledge. I certainly don't apologise for the policy we've now got, because it is a good one, and it is sustainable and it achieves our objectives.

    Mardell: Vince Cable, thanks very much.

  • Labour and Tuition Fees reduction
    Article: Mar 1, 2015
    By Cllr John Marriott - Lincoln, Sleaford and North Hykeham

    David Walker's comments on Labour's Chris Leslie's defence of his party's new policy on tuition fees are spot on.

    Isn't it ironic that, when David 'no ifs, no buts' Cameron pledges in 2010 to cut immigration by significant amounts and fails, nobody seems to want to put the boot in and yet, when the Lib Dems pledge to scrap tuition fees and fail, the voters throw the book at us! 'C'est la vie', as they say.

  • Colin Jackson
    Article: Mar 1, 2015
    By Helen Loydall

    On 22nd January 2015 your Ward Councillors, Bill Boulter, Helen Loydall and Kevin Loydall applauded the Olympic Medal winning athlete, Colin Jackson and the Mayor of Oadby and
    Wigston as they officially opened the new gym facilities at Parklands Leisure Centre.

    Colin Jackson helped the Mayor to cut the ribbon and proceeded to talk to customers who were using the gym and the new fitness studios which included the new Virtual Cycling Studio.

  • key_wind_turbine.jpg
    Article: Mar 1, 2015

    Liberal Democrats have set out plans to double the UK's production of renewable electricity by the end of the next parliament and make Britain zero carbon by 2050.

    This would end the UK's adverse impact on climate change for good.

    In government the Liberal Democrats have already more than doubled the amount of electricity from renewables.

  • ducking 3
    Article: Mar 1, 2015
    By Northampton Lib Dems


    Cllr. Sarah Uldall Lib Dem spokesperson on Highways and Transportation says the Conservative Controlled Northamptonshire County Council is ignoring calls for more money to be spent on fixing potholes and clearing blocked drains and gullies in the county town.

    Sarah says " whenever the question is raised as to why some country roads have more money spent per mile than busy roads in the town we never get a straight answer from the council."

  • Zuffah 3
    Article: Feb 28, 2015

    Regional Chair Cllr Phil Knowles was in Harborough today for the launch of Liberal Democrats Parliamentary Candidates Zuffar Haq's Westminster Campaign

    Pictured with Zuffar Haq along side Council Candidates Peter Rowbotham and Annette Deacon ‎, Cllr Knowles told the gathering '' We have a first class candidate in Zuffar with a well structured campaign plan and a history of hard work for the community over a lengthy period.

  • Traffic chaos
    Article: Feb 28, 2015

    NOTTINGHAM LIBERAL DEMOCRATS POLICY

    Powers for the council to tackle traffic offenses

    Nottingham Liberal Democrats note that:

    1. Nottingham City Council has been entrusted with enforcement of certain traffic offences under the Traffic Act 2004
    2. Traffic control measures are often seen as a source of revenue rather than a genuine attempt to resolve traffic safety issues
    3. Councils have been given powers to tackle minor motoring offences because the police didn't have the size of workforce to be able to deal with these issues
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