Wednesday, 29 February 2012

March meeting!

Windsor CLP meeting for March will be at Clewer Lodge on the 15th, at 20.00. Paul Clarke from GMB will be attending and talking to members.

All other events and Constituency meetings can be seen in the calender on the events page above. 

Friday, 17 February 2012

Campaigns and fundraisers!

No local elections in Windsor this year, however PLENTY going on around in our neighbouring CLP's and friends in the south east.

To check out whats going on please visit the events page shown on the tab above and view the calender which shows all the events. Some of them are campaign events, a chance for you to help places such as Milton Keynes and Woking to get their vote out. However many of them are fundraising socials, including a dinner in Bracknell with Harriet Harman and in oxford with the shadow chancellor Ed Balls.

Please keep familiar with our events page as its a fantastic way for us all to keep on the same wavelength and communicate at the stroke of the keyboard about whats occurring near-by. Cheers!

Tuesday, 7 February 2012

"Government by myth and prejudice". A letter to the Royal Borough Observer, 7th January 2012.

"I was saddened and appalled at the Prime Minister's [PM] comments with regards to Health and Safety [H&S] regulation. He used the old chestnut and proven myth, of children having to use goggles to play conkers to justify a stinging attack on "the monster that is excessive H&S regulation" [Front page Jan 6th edition]. Prompting a condemnation by Richard Jones, head of policy and public affairs at the Institution of Occupational Safety and Health who replied "Labelling workplace H&S as a monster is appalling and unhelpful, as the reason our legislative system exists is to prevent death, injury or illness at work, protecting livelihoods in the process."

The proposal to increase the speed limit on motorways and duel carriageways to 80 MPH is another example of policy incentives based on myth and prejudice, rather than sound evidence. A a comparable speed increase in the US in 1995 lead to a 16.6% rise in fatalities. A major role of Government is to protect the individual against the abuse of power, be it a criminal, an unscrupulous employer, or a speeding motorist.

The PM and this Government clearly is not concerned about the well being of the individual, they play to the gallery rather than base their policies on sound evidence. If regulation is worsened as a result, then many lives will be lost, numerous injuries and ill health will be caused. 

While I approve and welcome better regulation, prejudging any review in this way is dangerous Government by myth and prejudice. Reasonable regulation is the only way to control those with power, who have little regard for the health, safety and welfare of others."

Roy Reeves.
Chair, Windsor Labour Party

Monday, 6 February 2012


Welcome to the refreshed Windsor Labour site for 2012. We've moved some things over to Google Blogger as it is generally easier to manage than our previous Drupal site. We wanted to add a few things which the Google platform allows us to do more easily, so watch this space over coming months. We're transferring all the old blogs and content from the previous site too over the coming days.

(October 2011) Save Heatherwood Campaign

Archived (from October 2011):

Footage of the recent march to save Heatherwood Hospital. If you haven't already signed the petition 
then please keep an eye out for the stalls in either Windsor Ascot or Bracknell on a Saturday.

(September 2011) Conference Report Day Four

Archived (from September 2011):

Today was started with a debate on Crime and justice followed by a great speech by Andy Burnham on Young People. An amazing headteacher from Speke was the highlight of these debates telling conference how each pupil matters and how she turned around a failing school.

The afternoon was dominated by the Open Day Q&A with Ed Miliband where members of the public were invited to ask any questions. The session went on for a good half an hour longer than expected and spanned questions about David Miliband to strike action.

(September 2011) Conference Report Day Three

Archived (from September 2011):

The main theme of the debates today was ‘The Promise of Britain’ which ended with Ed Miliband’s Leaders Speech. The speech was obviously well received by the audience but had a lot of substance and was worth listening to again later on Newsnight. The sunny terrace of the venue overlooking the Mersey was packed after the speech with delegates discussing predator vs producer companies, ‘something for something’ and other details from the speech. One of the fringe highlights tonight was a Beatles Tribute band at the Cavern Club by the Save our Pubs and Clubs campaign.

(September 2011) Conference Report Day Two

Archived (from September 2011):

Started with a debate on Prosperity and Work where the keynote speech was to be Ed Balls. However he was overshadowed by the stunning speech given by 16-year old Rory Weal from Maidstone CLP. If you didn’t hear his speech click on the link below. The evening was spent at a Europe Reception and a housing debate with Ken Livingston. Not many of the other old guard politicians are present this year. Hugh Grant was speaking at a phone hacking fringe meeting at the same time as Ed Miliband was speaking at the Europe Reception. It was a hard choice but we decided to listen to Ed Miliband again. The night was rounded off by a Diversity Party at a local Indian Restaurant. Liverpool is a great conference city especially in the sunshine.

(September 2011) Conference Report Day One

Archived (from September 2011):

Venue right next to Albert Docks where the Blue Bar has changed it’s name to the Red Bar for the week. Nice touch. Ken Livingstone was well received as he started his campaign for Mayor in next year’s election. ‘Refounding Labour’ debate was interesting with the changes in party finances benefitting smaller CLPs, relevant of course for Windsor CLP. Ed Miliband had a busy night speaking at all 3 of the fringe meetings that Windsor Labour attended including Labour Women, Trade Union Labour Group and Labour South East.

(September 2011) Save Heatherwood Campaign

Archived (from September 2011):

Wed, 28/09/2011 - 7:30pm

There will be a public meeting next Wednesday at Windsor Boys School organised by Windsor and Slough Against the Cuts. It is being coordinated by Marc Green a local activist and Green Party member and all parties have been invited to speak on this issue that has cross-party consensus.

As you may have read in the local press, there are three options being considered for the future health provision in East Berkshire and two of these will mean the closure of Heatherwood Hospital. There will be public consultation on the plans in October/November. This meeting will be an opportunity to see what can be done to ensure that local views will be taken in to account.

Windsor Labour will be reporting back to local members on this meeting and we look forward to hearing your views on this.

(April 2010) Support for Liberal Democrats has collapsed in Windsor

Archived (from April 2010):

The Liberal Democrats’ desperation in Windsor is apparent with their standard ‘Labour can’t win here’ line in leaflets distributed to residents. Voters in Windsor can see through the misleading leaflets to the truth – at the last election in Windsor (the Park ward by election in January this year), the Lib Dems suffered a massive 18% drop in their vote whilst the Labour vote surged by 11%.

Residents are voting with their feet to the real alternative in Windsor – the Labour Party. Our manifesto which can be found at: offers people a real alternative including plans for pretty cool innovations for the town such as creating facilities for home workers at the library and making Windsor a tech hub. All this whilst still fighting for the retention of services against cuts which are too hard and too fast.

The fact that the Lib Dems abstained from the council budget vote illustrates that they are not prepared to represent residents properly. This weakness will be punished by locals on May 5th.
This blog was also sent as a letter to the local papers on the 26/04/11.

(April 2011) Parking in Windsor is Still a Complete Mess

Archived (from April 2011):

In recent leaflets delivered to local houses, the Tories have claimed success over parking problems in Windsor with “New Parking Spaces Across the Borough”. The evidence would point to the contrary. A walk in the centre of Windsor in the evening still shows streets lined with cars all the way down double yellow lines, showing that there is insufficient space for all the residents, with no enforcement. In addition, local businesses around St Leonards Road and Vansittart Road have suffered under Councillor Tom Bursnall’s ill-thought out resident-only schemes which now leave streets empty during the day with visitors unable to park on them, thus driving down trade. The park and ride scheme is completely under-used, yet congestion on Arthur Road is horrific and town centre street parking is bizarrely almost free.

The short-term sticking plaster policies of this local council are designed more about getting the next term in council than about actually sorting out long term solutions for the town. We need this to change. A comprehensive plan which is sensitive to the realities of our area but reduces congestion and pollution is long overdue but cannot be delivered by the Tories or Lib Dems. They have played electoral ping pong with this issue for too long, affecting businesses and the lives of people here. Let’s make that change with the vote on May 5th and get rid of this incompetent Tory and Lib Dem council.
This blog was also sent as a letter to the local newspapers

(April 2011) Councillors should look closer to home for savings

Archived (from April 2011):

The recently trumpeted 0.5% cut in our council tax bills delivers nothing to most people in the Royal Borough who actually want services from their council. Most residents have seen this cut as a cynical political statement rather than anything genuine. One wonders how much time and how much money were wasted trying to achieve this headline ‘reduction’. Perhaps the council could look closer to home for savings.

When the Tories came to power in the Royal Borough, one of the first things they did was to raise their own allowances by a staggering 91%, before deciding that 60 people had to lose their jobs to achieve efficiency savings.

Surely, leadership comes from the top. Returning Councillor allowances to the 2007 levels would save us well over £200,000; a gesture which may actually make people believe “we’re all in this together”. The candidates for the Windsor Labour Party will campaign for this reduction in Councillor allowances if elected to the Royal Borough council on the 5th of May.
This blog was also sent as a letter to the local newspapers.

(April 2011) 2011 Manifesto: Changing Windsor in Changing Times

Archived (from April 2011):

2011 Manifesto: Changing Windsor in Changing Times

Welcome to our manifesto pages for the Royal Borough of Windsor & Maidenhead local council elections on the 5th of May 2011. For Maidenhead Labour's own site, please follow the link on the menu bar at the top of this site.

It's an exciting time for Labour in Windsor and we hope you like our ideas. We launched the manifesto at a press event on the evening of the 12th of April. We really welcome comments and feedback. You can leave feedback through our 'Contact Us' link or directly contact any of the candidates listed under 'Local Council Elections'.

A pdf of the manifesto is attached to this page for you to download: <link>
Some highlights include:
* Campaigning to reduce basic Councillor allowances to the 2007 levels, saving over £200,000
* Making Windsor a technology hub - encouraging web and creative companies to come to the area
* Allowing home-workers to work from the library by putting in WiFi and hotdesking facilities
* Enhancing the use of mobile technology in the Royal Borough across council services
* A proposed 'Traffic Free Sunday' in Windsor
* A permanent museum in Windsor
* An annual live music festival across pubs and open areas
* Encouraging modern art installations and exhibitions across the town

(early 2011) Council elections in Windsor - Labour candidates announced

With the local Royal Borough council elections taking place on the 5th of May, the Windsor Labour Party is pleased to announce that we will be fielding 15 fantastic candidates across the area. For full details of each candidate, please have a look at the "Local Council Elections" link: (see information below)

For the candidates in the Maidenhead area, please look at Maidenhead Labour's site at:

Windsor Local Election Candidates 2011:

Ascot & Cheapside - William (Bill) Olney

William (Bill) has been a long time resident of Windsor and was a local publican of more than twenty years. Bill has been a parish councillor and has always had an interest in the local community and helping elderly residents.
“I am concerned about the council spending cuts and how they will be a blight on working families lives”.
William is standing in the Ascot & Cheapside ward and can be contacted 

Castle Without - Kate Pattinson

Originally from Maidenhead, Kate has lived in Windsor for 20 years. Having previously worked as an IT Project Manager, she recently completed a History degree at Royal Holloway University and currently volunteers at the Windsor Museum Store. Kate has three children who all attend local schools. Her interests include walking, live music and as a lifelong supporter of the Labour Party, local and national politics.

Kate is standing in the Castle Without ward along with Sona George Olikara. She can be contacted

Castle Without - Sona George Olikara

Sona George Olikara was born in 1977 and has been residing at Windsor for the past year and a half. He graduated in 1998 with an Engineering degree and has also completed his Post Graduation (MBA) in Business Management. He is currently working as an IT Programme Manager for a project with a large local company. He has always been a strong Labour Party supporter, believes in its ideology and principles and has been involved in politics since his college days. He loves Windsor for it being traditional yet trendy, warm yet open, its schools and its people and this was the main reason for him to move here from London.
As a strong advocate for change, he strongly believes that if given a chance he can contribute positively in developing Windsor and helping its residents. His strengths are his organizational skills and his ability to develop a great rapport with people around him and build relationships.
Sona is happily married to Betsy and has two sons, Noah and Ethan. He is also a very active volunteer at the British Heart Foundation, loves travelling and is an avid collector of manuscripts. Currently learning Spanish at East Berkshire College, he is also an avid twitterer and his twitter id is: @SonaLabour
Sona is standing for election in the Castle Without ward, along with Kate Pattinson. He can be contacted 

Clewer East - Yvonne Olney

Yvonne is an Accountant and lives and works in Windsor. Yvonne has two grown up sons both having been through the Windsor schools. She is a keen runner, having completed three London Marathons and is keen on promoting sports and healthy lifestyles for all.
“I believe that a strong society is one that looks after and appreciates its old, and encourages and stimulates its youth.”
Yvonne is standing in the Clewer East ward and can be contacted 

Clewer North - Tony Matthews

Tony Matthews is a long-established Windsorian who has been an active Labour member for nearly 40 years. In 1992 he played a major role in setting up the charity Windsor & Maidenhead Crossroads Care which provides breaks for unpaid family carers, and he is now Chairman of the Trustees. A former BBC TV producer, he now enjoys writing community plays about Windsor's local history, several of which have been successfully performed in local venues with the help of Windsor residents. He is a beekeeper and an allotment gardener.
Tony is standing in the Clewer North ward and can be contacted 
Clewer South - Laura Binnie

Laura Binnie - who stood in the 6th of January By Election in Park Ward, Windsor is standing again against the Lib Dems’ Richard Fagence in the Clewer South ward.
Laura has 3 children in local schools. She has worked in the Oil Industry for 17 years but has now opted to be a stay at home mother. She is studying for a maths degree and is in her final year. In her spare time, Laura also volunteers at St Edwards Church. Her hope is to be elected and support the residents in assuring that essential local services are protected by providing a "truly progressive alternative" within the council. Cuts cannot be allowed to take place without debate and, if elected, her wish is to ensure that this happens.
Laura is standing in the Clewer South ward and can be contacted 

Datchet - Jenny Ward

Jenny is a long term resident of Datchet and recently retired. In the past, she worked locally for an international magazine and for the last six years for the NHS Trust, as a patient records clerk. She has served as a school governor and is a member of Unison.
Jenny is standing in the Datchet ward and can be contacted at:

Eton & Castle - George Davidson

George has lived in the centre of Eton with his family for the past six years. He is standing in the Eton & Castle ward. He is the only candidate in the local election who is not employed by Eton College and who has a permanent home in Eton. George can provide an independent voice in dealings with the council and the college, for example in relation to the controversial ‘Rafts’ development. If elected, he wants to make Eton busier for traders and quieter for residents.
George stood against the Conservatives’ John Redwood in the last general election and has previously served as a Councillor in Slough as Deputy Leader of the Council, so has considerable experience in public office and getting results for local people.
George is standing in the Eton & Castle ward and can be contacted 

Eton Wick - Mark Olney

Mark grew up in Eton Wick where his father ran the Three Horseshoes pub. Mark has lived in the village for the past 18 years with his wife and 2 grown up sons. He is a Primary School Teacher and previously represented Eton Wick as a Councillor for seven years. During this time he fought for better services for the residents of the village both young and old alike. Mark had to reluctantly give up his role as a councillor when taking up the position of Deputy Headteacher at Eton Porny First School. Mark now works for a neighbouring authority and can once again stand for election in the ward. “I feel Eton Wick has been neglected over the past 6 years in terms of cuts to funding to improve parking, public transport and road improvements in the village. I feel the voice of the residents and their concerns over local services have been largely neglected. I would welcome the opportunity to put this right.”
Mark is standing in the Eton Wick ward and can be contacted at: 

Horton & Wraysbury - Peter Ward

Peter has lived in the locality for many years and has been a member of the Labour Party for over 27 years. He works for the NHS and is a member of Unison.
Peter is standing in the Horton & Wraysbury ward and can be contacted at:

Old Windsor - Ahamed Mashoor

Ahamed is a long-term resident of Old Windsor where he lives with his family. He works as a physiotherapist in the NHS.
Ahamed is standing in the Old Windsor ward along with Roy Reeves and can be contacted at:

Old Windsor - Roy Reeves

Roy has lived, worked and is now retired in the Old Windsor area. He is Chair of the Windsor Constituency Labour Party, Branch Secretary of the GMB Union and is on the Old Windsor Day Centre management committee. A former Head Gardener at Eton College and Gardener at Windsor Castle, he believes in encouraging people to be involved in local organisations, but not if this is at the expense of council workers’ jobs.
Roy is standing in the Old Windsor ward along with Ahamed Mashoor and can be contacted at: 

Park Ward - Brent Curless

54 year old Brent Curless has lived in Windsor for over 20 years and as a keen member of The Datchet Dashers can often be seen out running on The Long Walk. He will be running his 14th London Marathon this year and is passionate about people being fit and especially that our children have the facilities for and encouragement to an active outdoor life. He is also an advocate of open access to the countryside and would like to see more of The Great Park opened up to the general public including the river bank that runs through Windsor Castle.
Brent lives in Fountain Gardens with his Wife Penny who is a local magistrate and his three children who all attend Windsor schools. As a property developer he is keen that we have excellent quality in our built environment and with our transport links. He is also someone who would like to see a reduction in the number of cars in Central Windsor – especially at the weekends and has some new ideas on how to bring that about.
Brent is standing in Park ward and can be contacted 

Sunningdale - Ajay Nehra

Ajay lives and runs two local businesses in Sunningdale and Sunninghill. Having moved to Sunningdale in 2000 he is fully aware of the local issues that exist in and immediately surrounding the village. He has been an active Labour Party member and business supporter. Ajay stood for Sunningdale in the 2007 local elections and visibly improved Labour Party support in the area. Ajay has two young sons and is anticipating raising them both in Sunningdale schools.
“I am concerned with the lack of support in dealing with local issues in Sunningdale and particularly with the delays in getting the work done.”
Ajay is standing in the Sunningdale ward and can be contacted and followed on twitter at: He also has his own blog at: 

Sunninghill & South Ascot - Spike Humphrey

I have been living in Sunninghill and then South Ascot for the past 5 years. I work for a British company; my job is to export pharmaceuticals around the world. I have a 25 year career in Marketing, most of which has been in the South East region. While I have been a life-long Labour voter, I decided to join the Labour Party and become more active in political life about a year ago. The issues I feel most concerned about are that the policies and overall direction of the present government will lead to increasing inequality and unfairness in our country. I believe this is out of tune with the values of the mainstream majority of the British people. I fear the speed and depth of the spending cuts are too great. This will not only remove important public services, but also demoralise the people who are left in place to deliver what remains (in the health service, education, the police force, and so on); hence we will all suffer the consequences. I also see the coalition's present economic strategy as misguided and ultimately self-defeating, since what it is doing is to contract the economy and seriously weaken consumer and business
Spike is standing in the Sunninghill & South Ascot ward. He can be contacted at: 

(January 2011) Labour South East Gala Dinner

Archived (from January 2011):

Some of the Windsor CLP at last weeks gala dinner with Rt Hon Ed Miliband MP.

(January 2011) Jan 2011 Park Ward By-Election

Archived (from January 2011):

Thank you to all at Windsor Labour and our friends at Ascot and Maidenhead CLPs for this really encouraging result. We may not have the infrastructure and resources of the other parties, but with good planning and enthusiasm we managed to get our message across to the voters in Windsor.

(December 2010) Big Society Fails at First Major Challenge

Archived (from December 2010):

The snow chaos in the past couple of weeks provided the Royal Borough of Windsor and Maidenhead the perfect opportunity to show off its status as one of the "vanguard" communities for the "Big Society".
Across the borough, people struggled through roads and pavements that were not cleared or ploughed. After having had a trial run at this in January 2010, unfortunately our council was once again caught off-guard with unseasonal winter weather... in winter. Cue the army of volunteers to clear our streets with their shovels, marshalled by our local Councillors in a triumph for David Cameron's Big Society... er no. In fact nothing. People walking their dogs were amused and slightly dismayed to see that the Queen had two snow ploughs going up and down the Long Walk in Windsor, whilst cars slid around the snow covered main road it crosses.

A few days later, the temperatures dropped and the pavements froze over. With no pavements cleared of snow (even in the town centres) and reduced to ice skating rinks, pedestrians were forced to walk on the road. It was noticed that in places where people had taken the initiative and cleared the snow in the first place, the pavements had dried out and not iced over, leading residents to wonder what our council has been doing over the past 12 months since the last snow and exactly what are they paying their council tax for.

Even if our local Conservative Councillors had taken the initiative and actually used their Big Society concept a bit more, it generally takes more than spades to clear the snow. Local people can't afford their own snow ploughs - excepting of course, the Queen.
This blog was also sent as a letter to the local Windsor papers.

(2010) Homelessness in affluent areas

Archived (from 2010):

At this time of year, particularly with the current weather, many peoples’ thoughts turn to the homeless. You wouldn’t think it a major problem on the streets of areas like Windsor, but some homeless people are drawn to affluent areas and people can be less than sympathetic to their plight.

There will always be people who are not willing or be able to be in the hostels provided whether it is pet ownership or alcohol and drug abuse issues. Mental health problems can also play a part in self exclusion from help. Their lifeline in this borough is the churches that provide a rota of night shelters.
But this is just the visible sign of homelessness in the South East.

Many families with older children still at home well into their twenties realise how difficult it is for children to leave home with high housing costs. Imagine if that youngster didn’t have the family network that many take for granted. Family breakdown and young adults leaving the care system leave us with youngsters who don’t have these advantages. They become reliant on ‘sofa surfing’ and local authority B&B and hostel places.

Yes, these youngsters are off the streets, but will this ever address their long term needs?
For those still at home, low housing stock is an obvious contributor to this continuing problem and in areas where land is at a premium, new affordable housing will always be a major challenge. Legislation has tried to address this by forcing developers to provide social housing within new developments. But there is still a shortfall. Even with the Fair Rent act, private landlords are still able to charge rents which are too high for a young person at the beginning of their working life to afford.
So what are options for those without family support?

(December 2010) Volunteering

Archived (from December 2010):

What a fabulous set of pupils from Windsor Girls, who gave up their Saturday night to volunteer at the Butterfly Ball at the Castle Hotel last weekend. People of all ages volunteer day in and day out around Windsor and will continue to do so, whether they get reward points or not. You get a lot out of volunteering personally as it makes you feel connected to the community you are a part of. Wanting to contribute to society with no reward is an admirable thing and should not be politicised as the ‘Big Society’.

The messages from the ’Big Society’ are getting a bit confused in the telling. On one hand, Adopt-a -Street is taking pride in your area – at the same time street cleaning is being used as stick for non-compliant benefit claimants. The council are at pains to say that the Big Society is not about getting charity and volunteers to provide council services on the cheap, so we must ensure that this is not the case.

In the States, disadvantaged communities are served by large charities, such as the United Way, who operate in large companies to fund and man community projects. Employees contribute with time and fundraising. This is all well and good for the areas which have a large company in their community but this help can disappear as a company is relocated or closes down. With the lack of a coherent welfare state these people are dependent on charity and volunteers. I believe the majority of British public are not keen to go down this route to protect the most vulnerable in our society.
As always – these are just my views – I’d be happy to listen to yours.

(December 2010) Maidenhead Labour's website

Archived (from December 2010):

We're really pleased to be able to add a link to Maidenhead Labour's website at the top of our front page today. Please have a look at their site:

We have many joint activities between our local parties, especially as we are in the same council borough, the Royal Borough of Windsor and Maidenhead. As such, we have many local issues that are the same. We also allow members to come along to each others' meetings and social events.

(December 2010) To tweet or not to tweet

Archived (from December 2010):

I've been asked whether I have a twitter account to add to this site. I do, but I never use it! I did try, but as a 42-year old mother I feel that no-one really wants listen to my daily moans and words of wisdom.
But standing for public office means that I have a chance to air my views and opinions to a wider audience. This is why I would be privileged to provide a voice for residents who don’t believe their views are being represented. A Labour vote has always been seen as a wasted vote in Windsor, but with the Con-Lib coalition, it really is the only alternative vote to swingeing cuts in our local services. No vote is a wasted vote.

The cuts being proposed nationally at the moment are too deep and too quick and I want work to ensure that front line services can be protected to keep Windsor the great place to live that it is.

Laura Binnie

(November 2010) Guest blog: Steve Hedley, CEO Trinity Homeless Projects

Archived (from November 2010):

Steve will be speaking at the next Windsor Labour meeting on the 18th of November. We invited him to write a guest blog for our site.

HOMENo one ever came to us saying they want their own home. ‘Place’ is what people say, “I want my own place”.

To talk about ‘being somewhere’ rather than ‘having something’ leaves less to be disappointed about, less to get worked up about, less to hope for. The feelings of home may best be captured when you want to go there. The instant justifications provide a list of the very things we all wish for; a place to call my own, full of my things, warm, safe, familiar, a place to close the door on the rest of the world and be myself, put my feet up, follow my rules. Typically the opposite is true if you are homeless; no where to go, owning nothing, unsafe and unfamiliar, vulnerable to the world, unable to relax, not knowing the rules. Having a place is a big step towards having a home. You make a place a home by caring for it, by being stable, things people suffering the effects of homelessness struggle with. People are fearful when they first come to us. We call ourselves a hostel, which either conjures up images of a Dickensian workhouse, or a doss house that’s more dangerous than sleeping on the streets. What people find instead are small, warm houses run by friendly, welcoming staff. A space where you can relax and recover and spend as much time as you need to address the reasons that have caused you to become homeless. Getting a place to make a home is difficult enough for people not on the property ladder, even more difficult if you qualify for Social Housing and nearly impossible if you don’t. Yet getting a place to make a home requires first finding that place inside you that wants a home, otherwise getting a place will often mean losing it again as you don’t have the desire or the skills to turn that place into your home. The way we work at Trinity is; People come to us wanting a place and they leave able to make a home.

(November 2010) Long standing Windsor Labour member, Ann Matthews passes away

Archived (from November 2010)

It is with great sadness that we announce the death of Ann Matthews. Ann was a long-standing member of the Windsor Labour Party and a prominent activist. She served until recently as the Treasurer of the local party and campaigned in the recent General Election. Ann passed away last night after a period of illness. We pass our condolences to her family and friends.

(November 2010) Social meeting with speaker Gavin Hayes at The Trooper Windsor

Archived (from 25th November 2010):

All are very welcome to join WIndsor CLP at a social meeting at The Trooper 97 Saint Leonards Road Windsor SL4 1HX. Principally the meeting is meant as an opportunity for new, existing or future members to meet and get to know each other. We are keen to get as many people down as possible. We will be using the conservatory space at the rear of the pub.

As the party looks to move on with our new leader it seems the right time to open up the debate about where we are heading and our guest speaker will be Gavin Hayes General Secretary of the pressure group Compass he will be giving us a short talk on his paper "Transforming Labour".
You can find out more about Compass here
Please feel free to leave a comment and let us know your coming.

We look forward to seeing you all there!

(September 2010) Technology at the Heart of Government Policy

Archived (from September 2010):

(image copyright BBC)

David Rogers, the Windsor CLP conference delegate, gave a speech on Monday on the subject of "Technology at the Heart of Policy". The speech is still available to watch via the BBC iplayer (from 1:54:00):

The speech was very well received and BBC South Today spent time with David the following day, highlighting his support for tax breaks for the computer games industry and interviewing him about how he had found conference.

Afterwards David said "I'm happy that people agreed with what I had to say. We should really support and encourage technological growth in this country. It will help to solve a lot of problems."
Here is the original transcript for David's speech (click more if you are previewing this blog post):

Technology at the Heart of Policy
Conference, David Rogers, Windsor CLP.

Labour must put technology at the heart of policy, and recognise that it stretches across everything we do.

To recover our economy, we need to invest in the future. And that future is high technology: Technology to enable jobs, technology to revive our manufacturing industries and technology to help society.

We can only do this by ensuring we have the right skills. Without training, engineering apprenticeships and science graduates, we will only ever be consumers of technology.

Enabling communities
We should think laterally about how we can achieve economic growth through the use of technology. It is a travesty that we do not support rural communities to be more connected. We need to facilitate more remote and home working which will have tangential benefits on our transport network, the environment and for local businesses.

We must not allow deprived communities to become further disadvantaged by becoming a technology underclass. More so, we should transform high-unemployment areas such as Merthyr Tydfil, Port Talbot and County Durham through enabling new jobs from home which could support businesses in London and the South East who are crying out for staff. In this connected world, why should it matter where you live?

We have to drive the use of mobile applications in all areas of local and national government, which will help the disabled, the elderly and increase inclusiveness in our communities. At the same time, we have to understand the technology we are embracing. We cannot give away our private health records to companies in exchange for a computer system and our critical national infrastructure must remain secure.

Generating prosperity and enhancing our economy
Our focus must be on generating prosperity and enhancing our economy. We should be proud of our existing high tech industries and create the environment that allows them to grow. Most people do not realise that nearly all of the world’s mobile phones run on chips designed by a British company based in Cambridge.

We should make bold technological policy moves which will protect the environment, driving fundamental changes to car technology and embedded systems so that we are at the forefront of innovation.

I join the people of Dundee, Oxford and Brighton in asking why are we removing R&D tax credits from the computer games industry? Creative industries are a huge area of growth! We should nurture small developers and technologists and help them protect what they produce. Labour can be proud of its work on Opendata and open government. However, as a party, we need to revisit the digital economy act and ensure that we balance the rights and freedoms of individuals with the absolute need to protect the copyright of content developers.

I don’t have all the answers, but I do know that are going to live in a high technology future. Labour should lead us into this and put Britain at the forefront of science and engineering.

(September 2010) Conference blog

Archived (September 2010):

This conference marks the start of the next chapter of the Labour Party. Windsor Labour are here, representing our local community and helping to create policy for the future which will make lives better. Our conference delegate this year is David Rogers and he is regularly tweeting updates via @drogersuk. You can also follow us on twitter @windsorlabour.

Congratulations to Ed Miliband on becoming the new leader of the Labour Party!

(May 2010) A Message from Dr. Amanjit Jhund

Archived (from May 2010):

We've just returned from the election count at the leisure centre in Maidenhead and would like to share with you a message from Dr. Jhund:

I would just like to say that it has been a great honour and privilege to stand as the Labour Party candidate in Windsor.

I would like to extend my thanks and gratitude to both the Windsor Labour Party, whose activists and members have been an example and an inspiration. It has been their hard work and dedication that has allowed the Labour Party's message of equality and fairness to continue in Windsor.
I would also like to thank the people of the Windsor Constituency who welcomed me with open arms and treated me as a fellow constituent. I would like to thank them for their kind wishes and support.

Finally, I would like to thank my opponents whose gentlemanly conduct has been an example of how politics should be conducted.

Dr. Amanjit Jhund

(May 2010) Vote Labour in Windsor tomorrow

Archived (from May 2010):

You may have come here tonight wondering who to vote for and perhaps swayed by some of the Liberal Democrats' rhetoric about our position in Windsor. As our previous posts show, the Lib Dems have waged a pretty disingenuous campaign against Labour in the Windsor area.

We have challenged the Tories about the 4% council tax cut which is already resulting in budgets for this year being slashed. 60 members of staff at the council were made redundant - why? Just so the Tories could have a headline of the biggest council tax cut in the country. We don't believe that is right - a council is precisely there to provide services to people, that is what we pay for. Imagine what the country would be like under them? We would be winding back the clock to the 1980s and early 1990s and no-one wants that.

So why are the Lib Dems so ambiguous about their position on this? Time and time again, their candidate Julian Tisi has been asked about his position and he just blusters without giving an answer. The Liberal Demomcrats in Windsor are effectively "Tory-lite". Labour are the only voice of the progressive left in this constituency and we are determined to raise our voices against people who are more prepared to cut services for a headline than actually serving the people of their constituency. Vote for Labour's Dr. Amanjit Jhund tomorrow and you will get someone who will serve the local people and fight for the many, not just the rich few.

(May 2010) Meeting Windsor voters in Peascod Street

Archived (from May 2010)

Labour members were out in force on Saturday in the last weekend before the election. Dr. Amanjit Jhund was able to meet voters out shopping in Peascod Street, Windsor. The latest in a series of street stalls, the event was a big success. Fresh from his success the night before at the Windsor Boys' School hustings, many voters explained that they had decided to vote for Amanjit and not the other parties in Windsor based on hearing his views and policies. A dynamic and strong candidate, Amanjit has led a successful campaign for the Labour Party in Windsor, despite continuing attempts by the Liberal Democrats to undermine the party by distributing leaflets which misrepresent Labour's General Election position in Windsor whilst attempting to enhance their own with erroneous graphs.

(April 2010) Visit to East Berkshire College

Archived (from April 2010):

The Labour candidate for the Windsor Constituency, Dr. Amanjit Jhund recently visited the fantastic new Windsor Campus of the East Berkshire College to talk to Politics students. After giving the students a talk on why he was standing for the Labour Party, he took questions and discussed with the students a variety of issues including Afghanistan, Europe and creating jobs for young people.

Student Gregory Smith said "I found that Amanjit was honest and really helped to convey Labour policies to the young people, very convincing". Classmate Lewis Johnson said "I found that Amanjit was very helpful and answered the questions fairly and gave us a great insight into getting into the world of politics."

Having spoken to Amanjit, Karina Acklin said that she "thought that the talk was very inspirational and answers seemed more honest and more coherent than the other candidates that spoke in our class."

(April 2010) Game on for Hustings at Windsor Boys' School tonight

Archived (from April 30th 2010):

The election campaign in Windsor took a turn in Labour's favour at the hustings on Wednesday at All Saints church in Dedworth. The hustings were robust and Dr. Amanjit Jhund did an absolutely sterling job of laying out Labour's case for the next government addressing the future jobs fund, deficit reduction and Labour's continued support for education, the NHS and public services. He highlighted that the local Conservative-run council are cutting budgets already, recently laying off 60 staff. Amanjit also challenged the Tories' inheritance tax cut for the country's richest 3000 estates. He highlighted the fact that the Lib Dems in Windsor were like Tory 'light', seemingly not wanting to question the Conservatives. He backed this up with the example of the recent BBC Berkshire radio debate where Julian Tisi would not get off the fence on whether or not his party supported the 4% cut in council tax by the Conservatives which is leading to service cuts in Windsor.

As reported in the Windsor & Eton Express, there was a spat between the Conservative candidate Adam Afriyie and local independent candidate Peter Hooper with Adam Afriyie appearing to threaten legal action over certain comments. The Liberal Democrats failed to apologise for their 'error' in their leaflets claiming that they were showing the most recent election results (apart from the fact that it was for the wrong type of election). The Greens refused to turn up as the BNP were also at the hustings. Their candidate Peter Phillips made comments about disagreeing with civil partnerships and 'gay babies', going on to say 'I'm saying that as a gay man'. This paradox was noted immediately by the audience and panel. The UKIP candidate also attended the hustings.

So, to tonight! We expect a big audience will be at Windsor Boys' School and our candidate Amanjit Jhund is ready and prepared for a great debate, with only six days to go until the General Election. Come along and hear what he has to say!

(April 2010) Liberal Democrats mislead Windsor voters with incorrect voting data

Archived (from April 2010):

Windsor Liberal Democrats this week circulated addressed letters to residents in the constituency. The letter attacked both other main parties whilst showing a graph that appeared to show the Liberal Democrats as the only opposition to the Tories. The slogan 'Labour can't win here at the General Election' and on another leaflet 'Labour can't Win in Windsor' accompanied both graphs, implying that somehow the graph was based on a previous General Election result. The graph was not attributed (we believe it was actually based on local council elections in 2007).

We at the Windsor Labour Party want to see honesty in politics. We've repeatedly campaigned against dishonest and closed politics in Windsor, including exposing Tory Councillors who were taking allowances and not actually attending council meetings.

We have written to the Liberal Democrats to ask them that they play fair in the General Election next week and don't resort to this kind of 'dirty tactic'. We hope that their candidate, Julian Tisi will apologise to people in Windsor for the letters and leaflets his party sent out in his name.

For the record, we've shown above the actual result of the 2005 election. If you want a candidate that will represent you fairly and honestly, vote for Labour's Dr. Amanjit Jhund on the 6th of May.

(April 2010) Absent Adam AWOL at Windsor Boys School hustings

Archived (from April 2010):

On the 20th of April the Windsor Boys School held a hustings for their 6th form students. They invited political parties standing in Windsor at the General Election on the 6th of May to attend.
Dr Amanjit Jhund the Labour Party candidate, Mr Julian Tisi the Liberal Democrat candidate, and Mr Derek Wall the Green Party candidate all attended.

Mr Adam Afriyie, the Conservative candidate failed to attend and the Windsor Conservative party failed to provide an alternative representative.

Dr Jhund spoke about his disappointment in the absence of a conservative representative.
“Mr Afriyie has repeatedly declined the opportunity to debate his policies in front of the electorate. He has no excuse not to turn up to these debates now that parliament has been dissolved and he is no longer an MP.”

He continued by saying “Their failure to provide any sort of representative just goes to show the contempt with which the Conservatives in Windsor treat the electorate and in particular first-time voters.”
Dr Jhund went on to stress that he would accept any such invitations.

“I have already accepted invitations to several husting events. Unlike the Conservatives we in the Labour party welcome the chance to present our polices to the electorate and debate them in a full and frank manner.”

(April 2010) Adam Afriyie failure in Digital Debate

Archived (from April 2010):

Our letter to the local papers in Windsor this week:
During the discussion of the Digital Economy bill on the 6th of April, our local MP’s conduct was not that which should be expected from someone who is supposed to be representing our constituency. The contents of the bill aside, Mr. Afriyie’s blatant pre-election politicking detracted from discussion of the substance of the bill.

His apparent incompetence was astounding. Announcing the three clauses for which the Conservatives had ‘red lines’ for – he read out the wrong clause numbers for two of the three and had to be corrected twice. He then went onto confuse Penarth in Wales with Penrith in Cumbria – 289 miles from each other! Shortly after he then confused Penrith with Perth in Scotland, having to apologise again blaming his poor handwriting.

During the debate he mentioned Twitter being important, which of course it is but clearly not to him. He hasn’t used his twitter account for nearly a year. I hope that on May 6th, the people of Windsor will choose a better representative in the form of Labour’s Dr. Amanjit Jhund than our current clumsy MP.

(2010) Labour Manifesto 2010: A future fair for all

Archived (from 2010):