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Recent updates

  • UK Blood Donation award (10 donations)
    Article: Nov 28, 2015

    Lib Dem leader Tim Farron has welcomed news that rules which currently stop gay men from giving blood are to be reconsidered.

    The government has confirmed it will review the current ban on gay and bisexual men donating blood. At present in England, Wales and Scotland, men who have sex with men are deferred from giving blood for 12 months. A permanent ban remains in place in Northern Ireland, subject to ongoing legal action.

  • Lib Dem Councillors at Crediton Office
    Article: Nov 28, 2015

    Whilst anger mounts and residents face losing the important and the well-used Crediton council office, Liberal Democrat councillors have acted quickly, launching a petition to try and stop the cuts. Crisis talks have already taken place between Crediton's councillors and Mid Devon's District Council chiefs. The Conservative administration based at Tiverton has proposed the closure which would mean removal of the Crediton walk-in Market Street office next April.

  • Delegates at Regional Conference
    Article: Nov 28, 2015

    Over 200 Lib Dems attended the South West Regional Conference held in Exeter on November 14th & 15th.

    Lord 'Paddy' Ashdown gave an inspirational speech in which he warned that we should at all costs avoid becoming isolationist 'Little Englanders' the cause espoused by UKIP and elements of the Conservative Party. Whether we like it or not we live in a global world in which business and the economy is highly competitive. The Risks of Britain leaving the EU are enormous especially as it could lead to the break-up of the United Kingdom as Scotland would almost certainly opt to remain in the EU. In view of the growing external security threats the need for a coordinated international approach was more pressing than ever and 'going it alone' was no longer an option.

  • Article: Sep 19, 2015

    Totnes Lib Dems call on council to offer accommodation to Syrian refugees

    Syrian refugees sleeping at Budapest train station in Hungary
    Syrian refugees sleeping at Budapest train station in Hungary

    TOTNES Liberal Democrats are calling on South Hams District Council to offer temporary accommodation in the area to some of the refugees that the Government is planning to take from camps bordering Syria.

    John Birch, speaking on behalf of the Totnes Liberal Democrats, said: "South Hams has within its district one of the largest proportions of second homes in the UK, with over 4,000 in number and forming over 10 per cent of the housing stock.

    "Most of these homes are empty during the winter and we propose that the council and Government encourage the second home owners to make their properties available to Syrian refugees in the short-term while permanent arrangements are made.

    "Encouragement to the second home owners could be in the form of a short-term letting fee or rent paid by the Government out of its overseas aid budget.

    "South Hams District Council should also encourage the owners of other empty buildings within the area to make their premises available as temporary accommodation for the refugees. Examples of such properties are those owned by the Dartington Trust."

  • Article: Sep 19, 2015

    Liberal Democrat mayoral candidate Caroline Pidgeon said she would fight for a London which served the many, and not the few.

    The party today (Thursday) announced Caroline - who is a member of the London Assembly - as its candidate for next year's London Mayoral election.


    Caroline said: "London is a great city, but the huge potential it offers is not available to everyone.

    "We need to tackle the brain drain to London's economy caused by too many women not returning to work in part due to the high cost of childcare. We also need to end the scandal of too many young people struggling to rent, let alone buy a property.

    "Unless we tackle these barriers London will continue to be a city that serves the few, not the many."

    Caroline's campaign will focus on:

    • Supply of housing to meet demand and the scandal of high rents
    • Flexibility and affordability of childcare
    • Air pollution
    • Transport fares that meet modern day lifestyles
    Caroline said: "London is also a city with a shameful record of air pollution which particularly affects the health of children and older Londoners, sending thousands of people each year to an early grave.

    "It is a privilege to be selected as the Liberal Democrat Mayoral candidate and to head up our London election campaign for the Mayor and London Assembly.

    "Now more than ever we need to stand up for liberal values and ensure that we deliver a Liberal London where we welcome people fleeing persecution, embrace the huge advantages of being part of the EU and ensure that each and every citizen is treated equally."

  • Article: Sep 19, 2015

    Welcome refugees to South Hams

    The Totnes Liberal Democrats are calling upon South Hams District Council to come forward and offer a welcome and temporary accommodation in the area to some of those Syrian refugees the government is planning to take from camps bordering Syria.

    John Birch, speaking on behalf of the Totnes Liberal Democrats, says:

  • Article: Sep 12, 2015

    Liberal Democrat Leader Tim Farron and Foreign Affairs Spokesperson Tom Brake have called for an urgent debate in Parliament about the refugee crisis and the UK response.

    They are demanding a debate on the government's handling of the issue and believe the UK should be doing more to help thousands of refugees arriving in Europe every week.

  • Article: Sep 12, 2015

    Tim Farron has urged the Government to stop playing politics over the humanitarian crisis impacting on Europe and offer help to desperate refugees.

    Germany had set an example by allowing Syrian refugees to stay and apply for asylum, but the British Government has ignored calls to help more people.

    Earlier in the summer, Tim became the only party leader to visit the migrant camps in Calais where he met some of the people tragically affected by the humanitarian crisis.

  • Article: Sep 12, 2015

    Lib Dem leader Tim Farron and Scottish Lib Dem leader Willie Rennie have today issued a joint letter to Prime Minister David Cameron and First Minister Nicola Sturgeon calling for full transparency over claims two UK police forces accessed the communications data of journalists without obtaining judicial approval.

  • Totnes By Election
    Article: Sep 12, 2015


    One of the Totnes Green Party councillors elected just 4 months ago to South Hams District Council has resigned due to ill health. This has resulted in a by-election in the town. The Liberal Democrats have chosen John Birch to be their candidate in the by-election.

    About John Birch

Video of Recent Devon County Council Meetings