Thursday, August 31, 2006

Sunny Bala here we come...

Off to Bala tomorrow for the Plaid summer school. This years event is mostly around election planning and I am helping with a couple of sessions. With the tide turning so heavily against Labour next years elections are a big opportunity for Plaid and with the Lib dems and Tories making little headway in wales things are looking good.

My next leaflet has gone to the printers....Its September and the political year is just kicking fun fun!

People for Proper Policing.....

Bumped into Plaid supporter and PPP campaigner Arthur Roberts in Llandudno the other day. He told me "People for Proper Policing" have a website and want to encourage people to use it. Sadly I have forgotten the link but you can find it via a search engine.

I thinks its positive they are encouraging a debate about policing and no doubt their forum will be lively enough.

The only thing that puts me off is the moaning about people who break the speed limit being punished. Common sense suggests that somebody doing 80mph on a motorway in good weather conditions and light traffic is not a risk to anyone. Somebody traveling at 40mph in a 30mph area is a menace however and deserves a fine. In terms of stimulating a debate PPP are doing a good job but they are way to friendly towards people who break the law and put other peoples lives at risk.

Saturday, August 19, 2006

"Although I never watch Big Brother"

The phrase that has been used rather a lot in Plaid circles this week is "Although I never watch Big Brother its great to see Glyn doing so well". I actually do see it fairly regularly as some of my colleagues at work seem to enjoy it. Suddenly Plaid are Big Brother fans and my sparring partner Peter Black, and friend Neil Fawcett are reduced to uncharacteristic grumpy old man sulking:)

At the Flint and Denbigh show on Thursday just about everyone asked us why we hadn't got copies of the Sun on display. The answer was that we couln't buy one on the site!

Given Glyns comments about wanting to be the first Plaid Prime Minister I wonder what odds I could get on "Glyn to challenge Ieun Wyn Jones" being the "spoiler" story in the Western Mail the day our conference starts in September?

Wednesday, August 16, 2006

Off to the show.....

The Flint and Denbighshire Show being held in Denbigh this year is the highlight of the week and I will be on the Plaid stall all day Thursday. Come along say hello and have a cup of tea.

Tuesday, August 15, 2006

congratulations to Mark Young and family

Best wishes to Mark Young and his wife after the birth of their daughter Lili last week.

Hope all is well

Thursday, August 10, 2006

Imitation the greatest form of flattery

Since my departure from the lib dems in 2000 I have rarely had the chance to read Lib Dem news.

However a friend sent me a clipping from a recent edition. It is an article on local government by-elections written by ALDC political officer John Bridges the key paragraph reads...

"In Llandrillo and Rhos we failed to stand a candidate despite a resectable 20% base in 2004. Here Plaid applied some of our methods jumping from 10% to win with 47%. Imitation may be the greatest form of flattery but it still needs to be confronted."

John is a good guy and a very hard working councillor in manchester he is also excellent company. Sadly he has not responded to my email in which I asked him what Lib dem methods did we miss in Llandrillo yn Rhos? :)

On a more serious note. The lib dems are in a state of utter collapse in Conwy once one of their strongholds. They now have just 3 councillors down from 13 prior to 2004.This perhaps explains their failure to stand a candidate in a ward they had a councillor in up till 2004.

Wednesday, August 02, 2006

smile and be happy ...Plaid are winning.

Most people regard the political year as running from September to the end of July. So its a good time to take stock and see how the respective parties are performing in Wales. Since the general election there have been no published opinion polls in Wales so what objective measures do we have to show how each of the parties are doing?

The only measure are the local authority by-elections that take place throughout the year. They are a fair measure of party support even allowing for the high presence of independent candidates and the lack of regular three or four party contests.

The random nature of these polls is such that they are worth looking at.
Here is how the votes stack up for each of the parties in the 12 contests at County Council level since September 2005 where at least one of the four main parties stood.

Plaid 3296
Labour 2269
Con 3070
Lib 1473.

Five of the contests were in areas of traditional Tory strength which explains in part their high vote. Local government by-elections are an area in which the Lib dems traditionally excel so they may have some cause for concern. For Plaid the figures are very good indeed and reflect the progress we have made since the general election.

Tuesday, August 01, 2006

its 11,000 now....

Latest press release about hospital campaign is below...

11,000 back Hospital Campaign.

Plaid Cymru today revealed that over 11,000 people have signed petitions opposing the closure or downgrading of Hospital Services in North Wales.

The petitions were launched by Mark David Jones in the Vale of Clwyd, Cllr Phil Edwards in Clwyd West and Cllr Gareth Jones in Aberconwy after the publication of the Secondary Care Review which proposed a dramatic downgrading of services in Llandudno and the closure of Abergele and HM Stanley Hospitals.

Plaid Spokesman in the Vale of Clwyd Mark David Jones said “ The response has been astonishing and it is clear that the public are opposed to the planned cuts in service. We recognise the financial pressures put on the Health service by the Labour governments in Cardiff and Westminster. However this round of cuts does not address the root causes of the financial problems in the NHS and my fear is that if they are implemented we will be back here in a year or two fighting to save hospitals in Denbigh and Ruthin from closure.”

Cllr Phil Edwards recently captured the former Tory stronghold of Rhos on Sea in a county council by-election. He commented “ The single biggest issue on the doorstep was the proposed closures and down grading of services in local hospitals. People turned to Plaid Cymru as they knew we were the only party to have consistently championed the cause of small hospitals.”

Cllr Gareth Jones said “ My main focus has been on Llandudno and the proposed cuts there. However this whole package is deeply flawed and will do lasting damage to services across North Wales it must be thrown out.”
The petitions have now been presented to the Community Health Councils covering Conwy and Denbighshire.