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LETTERS TO THE EDITOR - LEAVING THE PARTY

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Ian Parker, New Local Government Network head of strategic communications, protests too much in his letter (LGC, 11...
Ian Parker, New Local Government Network head of strategic communications, protests too much in his letter (LGC, 11 June). Did he not once work for MP Peter Kilfoyle? Was not the Social Market Foundation more New Labour than Owenite by the time he got there? But personalities aside - NLGN director Dan Corry's links with Labour are much stronger - there is a strong feeling that the NLGN is more Labour than not - that its rise runs parallel with that of New Labour.

Like myself, they are doubtless disillusioned with Labour's treatment of local government. I chose local government as my road for public service, because, as a Liberal, I recognised that more could be achieved there than on the backbenches. Over the past decade, to my mind both Conservative and Labour governments have eroded local government power, and I do not seek to be a rubber stamp for Westminster. This is at the root of local government's problems - it is not 'local' anymore and I can understand why the NLGN would seek to dissociate itself from a party that has created these problems.

Stewart Rayment

Former Lib Dem chair, Poplar Neighbourhood Committee, Tower Hamlets LBC 1991-92
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