The LDV Friday (ish) meme: political firsts

by Stephen Tall on May 16, 2009

Welcome to the second in our series of LDV Friday memes coming to you today, erm, Saturday. Ahem. Anyway, here goes…


First political memory

I can recall waving an old-fashioned white dishmop from the window of my grandparents’ house, and calling out, “Look, it’s Michael Foot!” I’d have been about four. After that, the next memory is the miners’ strike, and my parents impressing on me the importance of turning out the lights “so that Arthur Scargill doesn’t win”.

First time you voted
Local elections, May 1995 – Church Ward, Sefton Borough Council, Liverpool. (I voted Labour.)

First party election broadcast you remember watching

This one:

First political poster/advert you remember
Again from the ’87 election, but this time a Tory one… “Labour’s policy on arms” – cue picture of a camouflaged soldier with their hands up. No idea why it stuck in my mind, but 22 years on I guess that’s the mark of an effective poster.

First party conference attended
I was a late developer, so September 2006 (Brighton) was my first Lib Dem (or indeed any party) conference – the first after Charles Kennedy’s resignation, that was the year we ditched the party’s commitment to a 50p top-rate tax. And, ahem, the first Blogger of the Year prize was awarded; but it wasn’t all plain sailing.

First politician you met
David Alton – he was the local MP where I went to school in Liverpool, and he took us on a tour of the House of Commons (much smaller than I was expecting). Actually I can also recall the poster used by the-now-Lord Alton in one of his election campaigns, “Everyone knows someone who’s been helped by David Alton”.

First canvassing experience
Temple Cowley by-election on Oxfordshire County Council, autumn 1999. I imagine I was spectacularly hopeless, having barely a clue what the county council did, and not at that stage quite understanding canvassing is about voter identification rather than conversion. But I enjoyed it enough to try it again the next year – for my own local election campaign.

As ever, all Lib Dem bloggers are welcome to carry on the meme. But I’m going to tag specifically this week’s Golden Dozen bloggers: Colin Ross, Charlotte Gore, Paul Walter, Darrell Goodliffe, David Boyle, Alex Wilcock, Joe Otten, Stephen Glenn, Northants’ Liberal Youth and Amy Kitcher.

And, please, any ideas for next week’s meme…?