So yesterday I attended my first Constituency Labour party meeting. The meeting was in the next town 10 miles away and even though I have been there countless times I missed one turning and took a more roundabout route to get there. Oh well.
When I got to the community centre where the meeting was to be held I saw several people waiting and asked them where the Labour meeting was. It turned out that they were there for the meeting but the staff could not unlock the door of the meeting room, so an alternative room had to be found.
The meeting was the AGM and the first one after the election, so it was an important meeting. By the time it started, there were about 25 people.
The first half of the meeting was the AGM and as expected the first half of the meeting was procedural: voting in officers and agreeing with the annual reports.
After that was a discussion about the election (the constituency re-elected the Tory MP) which was an optimistic discussion. No one suggested that, even though this government will be the most unpopular in living memory, this constituency could ever elect a Labour MP (it would take a lot to over turn a 39.2% majority over the Labour vote). If Cameron gets his way to redraw boundaries then the Tory majority will be even more. However, there are encouraging signs that the district elections could bring about more councilors, but of course, I will be ineligible since the party's rules are that you have to be a party member for a year to stand as for election. Not that I want to stand (yet!) I do not know the party officers nor the local Labour politicians which is something I really do need to rectify.
I introduced myself and pointed out the threats to our local hospital. I hope that at future meetings I can get to know more of the members and to build the opposition to the ConDem's planned NHS privatisation.