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The Liberal Democrats exist to build and safeguard a fair, free and open society, in which we seek to balance the fundamental values of liberty, equality and community, and in which no-one shall be enslaved by poverty, ignorance or conformity.

Recent updates

  • Lara's Campaign off to a Good Start!
    Article: Feb 18, 2018

    Lara Pringle lives in Northchurch and has done for over 15 years.

    She has two young sons who went to St Mary's Primary School.

    She has served as a parent governor and is well known in the village.

    Lara Pringle is the Liberal Democrat candidate for both the vacancy on the Parish Council and also for the vacancy on Dacorum Borough Council.

  • Ballot Box
    Article: Feb 16, 2018

    BY-ELECTION ROUND UP - 15th February was a busy night!

    There were three spectacular gains by the Liberal Democrats from the Conservatives on the same night.

    This achievement was only slightly tarnished by there being three other contests where Lib Dems did not stand.

    However in all cases except one the Lib Dem vote shares increased very impressively.

    York UA, Holgate: Lab hold; LD vote share +19.5%
    Teignbridge DC, Dawlish C & NE: LD gain from Con; LD vote share +47.5%
    West Oxon DC, Carterton S: Con hold; LD vote share +18.8%
    Tendring DC, St Pauls: Con gain from UKIP; LD vote share +8.3%
    Teignbridge DC, Chudleigh: LD gain from Con; LD vote share +28.3%
    N Norfolk DC, Worsted: LD gain from Con; LD vote share +39.4%
    NE Derbys DC, Grasmoor: Lab hold; LD vote share +11.8%
    Northants CC, Higham Ferrers: Con hold; LD vote share +2.3%
    Lancs CC, Morcambe N: Con hold; LD vote share +21.6%
    Halton UA, Halton Castle: Lab hold; LD did not stand
    Falkirk UA, Bonnybrig & Larbert: SNP hold; LD did not stand
    Epsom & Ewell BC, Ruxley: Res Assoc hold; LD vote share -2.5%
    E Northants DC, Higham Ferrers: Con hold; no vote share changes, last election uncontested
    Doncaster MB, Armthorpe: Lab hold; LD did not stand.

  • New Road Bridge
    Article: Feb 16, 2018

    Lockfield, off New Road, Northchurch is being considered for development after 2031, though this could be earlier. At the moment it is railway land and provides access to the track from a public road. As such it is infrequently used and generates very little traffic.

    In the left hand picture you can see Lara Pringle discussing the matter with her Lib Dem colleague, Tring County Councillor, Nick Hollinghurst. They both agreed that residential development would result in significantly more traffic to and from the site - and on a daily basis.

    Lara explained to Nick that there are huge traffic issues in Northchurch in general, with New Road now taking far more traffic than ever before. The narrow bridge acts as a chicane but does not always slow the traffic down. Sometimes traffic actually speeds up to cross the bridge before someone else.

    Lara feels that New Road and the High Street are both part of the same problem.

    She said,"I very much support the group campaigning for 20 mph speed restrictions.

    However, but I feel it should include New Road and start near the junction with Bridgewater Hill."

    She continued, "Personally I feel that the site is completely unsuitable for housing. I certainly wouldn't want to live so close to a high speed rail line. However the government has drastically reduced planning restrictions recently and so it is now much easier to get permission to build on Previously Used Land - which Lockfield clearly is.

    But if Dacorum Borough Council - which is our local Planning Authority - does ever grant permission, then I would look to the developer to make a significant contribution towards road safety in Northchurch - a mini roundabout at the site entrance, traffic calming on New Road and the High Street and speed tables at each of the crossing points."

    She concluded, "But whatever is decided we can't wait till 2031 for our 20 mph zone in Northchurch!"

  • Hero Vince
    Article: Feb 15, 2018

    New Leader, New Party, New Programme
    Vince says, "There is much to be patriotic about in Britain today.

    It is more tolerant and inclusive than when my late wife and I started an inter-racial family a generation ago. It has great resources of creativity and business talent, of learning and research. There is real generosity of spirit and a sense of community."

    "But there is also much that is wrong. There are disfiguring inequalities of wealth and opportunity."

    Reducing Inequality Matters

    In terms of people's sense of well being and satisfaction, reducing inequality matters far more than the general level of prosperity.

    High inequality destroys the sense of community, fosters resentment and leads to social tension and increases in crime.

    Income Inequality is growing

    Post-tax income inequality rose strongly in the 1980's, though it has slowed a little since.

    Among developed countries, UK is now one of the most unequal, well behind Scandinavia, Germany and France.

    We have become similar to the US, S Africa and post-Communist Russia.

    The top 1% are about half a million of mostly middle aged men. They tend to work in financial services, the law or medicine and earn just over £150,000 each.

    The super-rich (the top 0.1%) are roughly 50,000 people earning £1+ million per year.

    Wealth Inequality is growing

    The Resolution Foundation now estimates that the top 1% of adults - 488,000 people - own 14% of the UK's assets. That's about £3.16 million each.

    Meanwhile, at the other end of the scale, 15% of adults (7.3 million people) either have no assets at all or are in debt.

    Social Mobility in UK is worse than in US

    These inequalities make Social Mobility in the UK one of the worst in the world.

    Here, by and large, your prosperity and wealth depend on your father's.

    If he was poor, you'll be poor - if he was rich, you'll be rich.

    Not very fair, is it?

    Lib Dems will Work to Put This Right by:

    • improving equality of opportunity
    • integrating tax and National Insurance
    • taxing wealth fairly to finance education
    • putting a penny on tax to fund the NHS
    • direct measures like changes to the Minimum Wage

  • Document: Feb 15, 2018
    720.75 KiB drawing or desktop publishing document

    Information about Lib Dem national policy and local election success during 2017

  • Croxley Link
    Article: Feb 14, 2018

    Recently was announced that Mayor of London Sadiq Khan had refused an offer of £73 million of funding from the government to start the Metropolitan Line Extension rail project (MLX). But now the Liberal Democrat Mayor of Watford, Dorothy Thornhill, has weighed in, saying this will not be "the end of the line" for the scheme.

  • Lara Pringle at Berkhamsted Sportspace Centre
    Article: Jan 28, 2018

    Since April 2004, Dacorum Sports Trust (DST) has managed the sports services previously provided by Dacorum Borough Council (DBC) on a 20-year contract. Since starting up they have also contracted to run newer facilities and services.

    DST is a not-for-profit company and a registered charity and trades as "Sportspace" under which name they are well known throughout the borough and beyond.

  • Croxley Rail Link
    Article: Jan 25, 2018

    STABBED IN THE BACK!

    Between Labour 's London Mayor Sadiq Khan and the Tory minister Chris Grayling South West Herts has been stabbed in the back with the cancellation of the Met Line Extension.

    Local leaders have come up further funding but there has been no leadership shown by Chris Grayling - with the result that Sadiq Khan has finally refused to take on the project - funding notwithstanding.

  • FOOD WASTE
    Article: Jan 8, 2018

    The responsibility for waste is split between the district and borough councils - which are responsible for collecting household waste - and the county council - which is reponsible for setting up Household Waste Recycling Centres (HWRCs) and for disposing of all the waste arising within the county. Hertfordshire County Council must devise a Waste Disposal Strategy and this must account for commercial waste as well as all municipal waste. The Hertfordshire Waste Partnership is a consortium between all the districts and boroughs in the county and the the county council itself. This shares costs, refunds savings and explores and assesses new methods of waste disposal. It also uses the economies of scale that result from a county-wide co-ordination in order to negotiate competitive contracts for waste disposal that save money for all of Hertfordshire's council tax payers.

  • Alstom Coradia iLint
    Article: Jan 4, 2018

    To be fair there are several different approaches to making short-distance suburban rail services quieter, greener, less polluting and more efficient. Most involve batteries or fuel cells and relatively short routes. However, this is one which caught my eye recently.

    Last year the French engineering company Alstom presented a zero-emission, self-powered train at the annual InnoTrans trade fair in Berlin. It was a modified version of a service-proven, diesel-powered unit, the Coradia Lint 54, with hydrogen fuel cells and hydrogen storage replacing the diesel engines.

Nick Hollinghurst