Changing the Politcal Landscape

A bit about leafleting for the Green Party and a photo gallery.

There are local elections coming up in May. As a member of the Green Party I am delighted that they have two excellent candidates standing in the centre of my town, officially known as St Margaret and St Nicholas Ward (King’s Lynn Minster was St Margaret’s Church before its promotion to being a Minster, while St Nicholas Chapel is it’s North End counterpart). I am helping with the leafleting – I did some yesterday and plan to do more tomorrow. The northern boundary of the ward is marked by a railway spur only a few minutes walk from my house, which means that my leafleting area is all within easy walking range.


I got an email about upcoming campaigns on Thursday evening, noted that one of them was for Rob Archer, a former railway worker who was only just short of being elected first time round, and emailed him to say that I would be round on Saturday morning. Having established that his home was somewhat closer to the South Gate than to the town centre, and with a stated start time of 10:00 I set off at 9:30, duly arrived at 10, and was entrusted with a pile of leaflets and a map of the northern part of the ward, at which point I set off. I did two streets, Wyatt Street (too old to have been named after Danielle Wyatt, but there could be a connection to former Warwickshire and England skipper Bob Wyatt) and Kettlewell Lane on my way home, then I took a short break, and set forth again, polishing off Archdale Street (another with possible cricket connections – England Women’s first ever skipper Betty Archdale, and Somerset keeper the reverend Archdale Palmer Wickham), Eagle Yard, Eastgate Street and their side of Gaywood Road.


The current leaflet, a double sided A4 sheet in the form of a newsletter (which means it has to be folded to fit through almost all letterboxes) is highly impressive:


Yesterday’s activity contributed to a splendid photo gallery, and this morning’s walk augmented it. These pictures both showcase some of the natural sights that King’s Lynn has to offer, and in some cases further illustrate why more Green councillors are badly needed:

A Variety Post

A mixed bag of a post, featuring local politics, libraries, autism, science, nature and photography.


Welcome to this post in three parts. I am going to start by mentioning a local election that took place in my area today and in which I voted, then I will be mentioning an event that will be taking place at Gaywood Library (one of four such establishments in Norfolk that I visit at least semi-regularly) and I will finish up with some links to do with nature which will lead naturally to some of my photographs.


The election in which I voted today happened due to the laziness and arrogance of the incumbent councillor, who in spite of living just across the road from the Town Hall never attended meetings.

Four candidates were in the contest, in alphabetical order:

Rob Archer of the Green Party
Francis Bone of the Labour Party
Helen Russell-Johnson of the Liberal Democrats
Mike Taylor of the Conservative Party

In the ordinary course of events my inclination, especially given that the displaced councillor had been from the Labour Party would have been to vote for Mr Archer. However, the Liberal Democrat candidate happens to be my aunt. Therefore I voted for her.

I have started this post by covering this election for two reasons:

  1. I want to make it clear to the Liberal Democrats that I voted for my aunt IN SPITE of the fact that she was representing them not because of it.
  2. Also, just in  case Mr Archer happens to be reading this, I hope he will take it as both explanation and apology for not having voted for him on this occasion.

I conclude this section of the post with a picture of my Political Compass certificate (it is free and does not very long to answer the questions which are used to assign your score):

Political Compass Certificate


The event at Gaywood Library is a Business Evening at which I hope it will be possible to raise the subject of the Autism Hour, one of the National Autistic Society’s recent initiatives. I have already confirmed that I will be in attendance. Here are a couple of pictures to end this section:

Personalised SymbolPublic Libraries DisplayPL coinPL stamps


My nature links naturally divide into three segments, with a few photographs of my own forming a fourth. We will start with…


This story courtesy of is about a dinosaur that has been named Albertavenator Curriei (“Currie’s Alberta Hunter”, named in honour of Canadian paleontologist Dr Philip J Currie). Below is a representation of this creature by Oliver Demuth:

Credit: Illustrated by Oliver Demuth. © Oliver Demuth


Stan Kroenke, current owner of Arsenal Football Club, has just launched a new TV channel devoted to blood sports. I have two links to share, and some words for Arsenal fans at the end:

  1. A Guardian piece titled “Trophy hunting is vile. Stan Kroenke’s TV channel must be banned” which gives full detail on this.
  2. A petition aimed at the sponsors of Arsenal Football Club asking them to withdraw support and so help force Kroenke out, screenshot below:

For ordinary Arsenal fans my suggestions are simple – boycott all home matches until Kroenke goes, and if you are a season ticket holder return your ticket and demand a full refund, making it clear that you will return if and only if Kroenke is no longer involved with the club.


This morning I reblogged Part 4 of Anna’s series of “Paradise on Earth” posts highlighting the wildlife that can be seen around Trosa and the Tureholm Peninsula. Since then she has added yet another post to that series, and I include links below:

  1. Part 4, concentrating on birds including the Osprey shown below.
  2. Part 5, also dedicated to birds. I have chosen as my sample image a Linnet.

Finally, to end this section, and the post as a whole we have some of…


Mother and childMoorhen3 CormorantsCormorantCormorants at waters edgeCormorants and gullsMoorhen in upper purfleet

Little Egret 1
I close this post by revisiting the Little Egret.

Two Great Manifestos

Covering the Labour and We Own It manifestos.


The two manifestos to which I refer are those the Labour Party and the We Own It Campaign. In this post, which as a purely political post features text that alternates between red and green I will share links to some of the posts that the Labour Manifesto has already generated, and links to both manifestos and some of my own thoughts. 


This is a must-read document about public ownership. At the end of the document there is a link to click to enable you contact your candidates to ask them if they will support these measures – I have just done so. As a sampler, here is the section on Railways:


As a coda to the above I point out that most of our railways are in the hands of profit making arms of other countries state owned railways – the Dutch state owned railway by way of Abellio operates more track in this country than there is in the whole of the Netherlands.


I recently shared the draft version of this manifesto with you, The final version was released yesterday, and is every bit as good as expected. The screenshot below shows the scope of the document. Please do read it in full – primary sources are always better than secondary, even on those occasions when the authors of the secondary sources don’t have axes to grind.



In this section I will share four links to posts concerned with the Labour Manifesto:

  1. Richard Murphy of Tax Research UK first response was this post, titled “Labour has delivered a good manifesto for the UK
  2. Following up on the above post, Prof. Murphy has also produced the following, titled “How to pay for renationalisation
  3. The Skwawkbox have produced a piece that combines commenting on the Labour Manifesto with showing the sheer desperation of the Tory response to it. This post also has an excellent accompanying graphic, reproduced below:
    con fake news grinder.png
  4. Jeff Goulding on RAMBLINGS OF AN ORDINARY MAN has produced a splendid piece titled “Labour’s manifesto: a triumph of leadership and hope over cynicism and despair“, a very detailed analysis accompanied with some excellent pictures, one of which I reproduce below:


I have no objection to tactical voting where such represents a chance to be rid of a Tory. In certain seats, notably Brighton Pavilion which they already hold and the Isle of Wight among others I would unhesitatingly call for a vote for the Greens, given that they have stepped aside in no fewer than 30 seats to improve Labour chances there and that I have a great deal of time for the Greens. In my own constituency of North West Norfolk there is only one way for any progressively minded person to vote – for Labour Candidate Jo Rust. Make sure you use your vote on June 8th.


Just a few photos to end this post:

Lot 1107 in James and Sons upcoming auction.

1107-a – A Northern line train of 1956 stock.

1107-b: The last two items in the album.

Mama duck with her brood, the Gaywood River near Beulah Street.

Voting and Imaging

An account of voting in the Norfolk Police and Crime Commissioner election and of my day at work.


I have had a busy day imaging auction items at James and Sons, but before going to work I did find time to…


The only election in which us Norfolk folk had a vote today was for Police and Crime Commissioner, and to put it mildly I was not 100% convinced that this was an election worth voting in. However, in my inbox this morning was an email from the Grteen Party candidate, and that settled the issue – I would vote. The polling station was not a hive of activity (indeed to judge from the reaction to my arrival I may well have been the first voter the folks running that polling station had seen that day). This election used a preference system – one vote for your favourite candidate and one for your second favourite. With three of the candidates being respectively Tory, UKIP and a highly suspect Independent, and a fourth standing for what is effectively an ex-party, I used my votes for the Green party candidate (1st) and Labour (2nd):



Today’s imaging consisted of two distinct parts, first a collection of police helmets and such, and second starting work on some postal history items. I will start with the…


These feature a wide range of police organisations.


Most of the postal history stuff was not so interesting in appearance, although there were a few hihglights…

Putting the April Auction to Bed

A brief account of today at work and a plug for the Green Party manifesto in the upcoming London mayoral elections.


As well as details from today at work I have something else to share which will be revealed later.


Last week James and Sons had its March auction, which attracted unprecedented interest among online bidders, with almost 300 registering to bid. The April auction catalogue is available in print and can now be viewed online by clicking here. Today featured an big effort to get the imaging done, with the result that most lots now have their accompanying image or images. Some of the highlights from today’s imaging now follow…


The Green Party manifesto for the London Mayoral elections in 30 days time is now out, and very impressive it is too. Here are some links for you to follow up:

So, for all my London based readers, vote for Sian Berry in the mayoral elections.

The London Energy Company

An extended signpost to a very detailed article about London mayoral candidate Sian Berry’s latest excellent idea.


This is yet another excellent proposal from London mayoral candidate Sian Berry. For the rest of this post I will give you the introductory paragraphs of the article from, the picture that appears at the top of the article, and a link to the full article.


The article, which appears under the heading “Green Party’s mayoral candidate proposes new clean energy company for London” starts as follows:

The Green Party’s mayoral candidate Sian Berry has announced plans to set up a new renewable energy company that will operate as a subsidiary of the UK’s Transport for London (TfL).

The proposal, which is part of the party’s 2015 London Mayor campaign, aims to reverse government attacks on solar power by setting out clear plans for a major expansion of renewable technology across London.

The London Energy Company would help the city to source 20% of its electricity needs from solar power alone.

By investing in other renewable technologies, the company is expected to deliver at least 30% of London’s energy needs from zero or low-carbon sources by 2030.

Sian Berry said: “There is huge potential in London for a wide range of low and zero-carbon technologies to be used to generate heat and electricity from the sun, wind, ground and air using heat pumps, gas created from waste, and from London’s tides and river flows.”

The clean electricity generated will be used to power Crossrails operations.

Here is the picture:


Please read the full article here.

Public Transport

Links to information about a wonderful idea concerning London transport put forward by Sian Berry and to a campaign being run by Which?


I have today seen two public transport related items that I wish to share, one of which I have already pressed on to my London transport related website. I have also tweeted about both items.


The Sian of this heading is Green Party candidate for London Mayor Sian Berry. The suggestion that I am so enthused by is that the entire area covered by London Transport should be a single fare zone, so that people who work in London but cannot afford premium property prices near the centre do not also get hit by higher fares. For more details I have two links for you:

  • Sian’s own piece, posted here
  • This article in the Standard.

I wish Sian luck in the London mayoral contest.


Just a brief piece here pointing you in the direction of the Which? campaign to make it easier for customers who have been let down by rail companies to secure refunds (I still remember how much work I had to do when claiming a refund from Midland Mainline 12 years ago, which was so clear a case that they actually gave me more in compensation than I had asked for). To find out more, and hopefully sign up to this important campaign please follow the link below:

Make Rail Refunds Easier

Saturday Sharing

A short post mainly devoted to sharing links, but with some photos also included.


This is a brief post, principally to share some interesting and important links, At the end, there will be a few photos from in and around King’s Lynn.


Today’s link’s divide naturally into two sections, starting with…


Yes everyone – #JezWeCan is now #JezWeDid – Jeremy Corbyn not only won the election outright in the first round, he did so with an absolute landslide, leaving even the 57% achieved in the first round by Tony Blair when he won the leadership behind him. I have three links that relate to this news…

  1. From yesterday, courtesy of Vox Political, comes this story about people in Guildford approving of policies until they were told whose they were (Corbyn’s), at which point the hypocrites sought to back track from their earlier support.
  2. My second link is this offering from Green Party leader Natalie Bennett immediately after the Corbyn victory was confirmed.
  3. This, from dwpexamination, is a detailed analysis of the breakdown of the votes in this leadership election, which I have chosen to accompany with this infographic courtesy of George Aylett on twitter:


Tax Research UK have produced this fine piece emphasising that public services are not like business.

Disabled People Against Cuts (DPAC) have produced this piece about happenings in Waltham Forest, ending with the following appeal:

If you are a former ILF recipient, living in the Waltham Forest Council area can you please email us at, or if you know someone who is, could you please ask them to contact us.

The Guardian have produced this about the sale of council houses

The folks at politicalsift.have produced this piece under the title “We Are Condemned To be Free“.

This piece from disabilitynewsservice is both a confirmation of the fact that the Cameron government has made history by causing Britain to become the first country to be investigated by the UN Commision on the Rights of People with Disabilities and some detail and why this is happening.

Finally, via Huffington Post, comes this piece written by a mother going public about her daughter’s autism diagnosis.


Just before putting up some of my more recent pictures, a reminder that tomorrow is Heritage Open Day, featuring 57 sites in King’s Lynn…

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Marxism 2015 3: Accommodation and Day Two

A personal account of day 2 of Marxism 2015.


Welcome to this, my third post about Marxism 2015, the five-day political festival hosted by the Socialist Workers Party at the Institute of Education in London. I hope that you will enjoy this post and be inspired to share it.


I was booked to stay with somebody in Walthamstow, and although their house is not close to a tube station, it would nor amlly have been easy to get there. However, the tube strike meant that we had to go by bus to Clapton and get a London Overground service to Wood Street. In the heavy traffic generated by the tube strike this took considerable time. Getting in the following morning was easier, but I failed to allow enough time (a very rare occurrence) and arrived a little late for the first meeting…


Here is a photo of my timetable for the day in question, showing the meetings I decided to attend…


All of these meetings were magnificent, but I am going to concentrate for photos on the first two, and for most of my text on the third.

Here then are some photos from the first meeting, and fascinating stuff it was too, with a convincing demonstration of egalitarianism in early human history…




DSCN8869 DSCN8870 DSCN8871

These reconstructions are wrong in one respect - the houses had neither windows nor doors, being approached through the roof, with most of daily life taking place on said rooftops (there being no roads).
These reconstructions are wrong in one respect – the houses had neither windows nor doors, being approached through the roof, with most of daily life taking place on said rooftops (there being no roads).


A mother goddess from these ancient remains.
A mother goddess from these ancient remains.

A 19th century South American village on similar lines.
A 19th century South American village on similar lines.

For the second meeting I attended that day on Mental Health, photos really can tell most of the story…


Another connection to where I grew up - Jeremy from Streatham talking about the Mental Health Charter.
Another connection to where I grew up – Jeremy from Streatham talking about the Mental Health Charter.

Jo from London tells of family memories of living near a mental hospital (When we first moved to London there was exactly such an institution within a few minutes walk of our home)
Jo from London tells of family memories of living near a mental hospital (When we first moved to London there was exactly such an institution within a few minutes walk of our home)

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This picture adorns one wall of the Elvin Hall where the meeting took place.
This picture adorns one wall of the Elvin Hall where the meeting took place.


Susan gives her opening talk on Mental Illness: A Disorder of Capitalism.
Susan gives her opening talk on Mental Illness: A Disorder of Capitalism.

The feature image for this post.
The feature image for this post.



Although I thoroughly enjoyed this meeting I was a little disappointed that it was so dominated by German and Austrian composers, with only brief mentions of the Italians (my favourites). Before moving any further I must pay tribute to Siobhan from East London who stepped in at the twelfth hour when the person who should have been chairing the meeting could not be located, and did an excellent job…

Siobhan from East London who stepped in as chair at the twelfth hour.
Siobhan from East London who stepped in as chair at the twelfth hour.

Although as I have said I would have preferred more credit to be given the Italian composers, I did enjoy this meeting, and overall Sabby Sagall acquitted himself well in slightly testing circumstances…

Sabby Sagall speaking about Classical Music.
Sabby Sagall speaking about Classical Music.

I will finish this post with a few pictures from later in the day…

Mark L Thomas addresses a packed house on "Are the Greens a Left Alternative?"
Mark L Thomas addresses a packed house on “Are the Greens a Left Alternative?”

Shahrar Ali, leading Green, offers constructive comment from the floor.
Shahrar Ali, leading Green, offers constructive comment from the floor.

Sarah Creagh introduces "Rosa Luxemburg and the German Revolution"
Sarah Creagh introduces “Rosa Luxemburg and the German Revolution”

A moment of whimsy -a close up shot of on of Sarah Creagh's earrings.
A moment of whimsy -a close up shot of on of Sarah Creagh’s earrings.

Blackhorse Road Station, from where a 123 bus gets to the end of the road on which I was staying, by night (definitely the best time to see it!)
Blackhorse Road Station, from where a 123 bus gets to the end of the road on which I was staying, by night (definitely the best time to see it!)