Saturday, 31 December 2011
The English Democrats' Chairman's New Years' Message
I hope that all English Democrats’ members, supporters and voters have already had a very Merry Christmas and I wish us all a very Happy New Year!
As the New Year approaches, it is worth considering both what we have achieved already, which I have tried to give some flavour of, in my three part 'Retrospectives', and also to look forward to the opportunities which the coming year will present.
An important milestone, that was reached in 2011, was our council election victories in Boston, Lincolnshire, where our excellent candidates, Elliott Fountain and Dave Owens, were elected as English Democrats councillors for the Borough. These were not the first English Democrats councillors, but their victories were our first ever election wins at this level, and I am sure there will be many more such results in the coming years for our Party. It is generally considered a significant milestone when a party reaches the point where it can win First Past the Post elections!
We fielded a very respectable 237 candidates across the country in the May elections, and some other excellent results, for a small Party at our stage of growth, were obtained.
2011 was also the year in which the new website was launched. We also had an excellent Party Conference, held in Leicester.
A number of organisational and administrational improvements were also set in motion in 2011, and I am sure the Party will benefit from these as we move into 2012. We have 'upped our game' considerably with a professional fund raising campaign and have also used the opportunity to prune our membership database from any natural wastage of lapsed members – an exercise which we hadn’t done for a couple of years. So I can now reveal that we have today 2992 proper party members as specified in our Constitution and a further more than 7,000 who have signed up to express their support. This is a useful point from which to focus on building up our donor and supporter base over the coming years.
The coming year will be an exciting one for our Party. 2012 will see mayoral referendums in eleven of the major cities of England, with some coming as a result of government legislation and others having been or to be triggered due to the hard work of our activists, as is the case, for example, in Salford. There our North West Chairman, Stephen Morris, is doing great work towards the success of that campaign. The Salford referendum gives the people of Salford their first chance to decide who will be their Council Leader on the 26th January (http://www.salford.gov.uk/mayoral-referendum.htm).
In addition to this, there will be a Spring Conference on the 10th March and then 128 Local Authority elections on the 3rd May, at which our Party will strive both to stand more candidates than ever before and to ensure that some of those candidates emerge as victorious English Democrats councillors.
On the same day there will be elections in London, to the Greater London Assembly and also for the position of Mayor of London. Our capital desperately needs an English patriotic voice and it is important that we give London the best campaign that we can manage - and our plans are already well advanced!
In November the public will have the chance to elect Police and Crime Commissioners for every English Police Force area outside London. The English Democrats will field as many suitable candidates as possible in these elections, as some good old fashioned commonsense is badly needed in our Police Forces where their effectiveness is weakened and undermined constantly by red tape and politically correctness. Elected English Democrats' Police and Crime Commissioners will oppose the PC politicisation of our Police Forces and let our bobbies get on with doing what they do best - fighting crime!
So far I have only mentioned some of the main elections which are to be held in 2012. There will also be many other exciting projects and developments that our Party will be busy with.
As you may imagine, from the above photograph, I shall be looking to hanging out the Cross of St George right across England and I shall need all the support that you can give! So let's start the New Year determined to make much more real progress for England!
For now let me just wish all our members, supporters and voters a very Happy New Year. I look forward to working together to make 2012 a great year both for our Party and for England’s Cause!
The English Democrats