At this weeks General Management Committee meeting for Bridgwater and West Somerset Labour Party the following decisions were made.
Tony Heywood (nominated by Bridgwater Branch) was elected unanimously as the CLP Treasurer following the resignation of Hadrian Speight
Future of Unity House It was agreed that the premises ctte should make an application to the Labour Party for a financial settlement resulting in the sale of Unity House and that in the light of that should investigate and cost all options from having a permanent base in Bridgwater to having an office, storage space, a café/bookshop, meeting space or just to continue meeting wherever as needed It was further agreed to take up the offer to meet on the ground floor of Unity House free of charge until such a time as we eventually lost the place. Branches and other party bodies could also consider this option.
Conference Delegate -The BW&WS delegate to the Labour Conference (24-27 September, Brighton) is JANE GRENFELL . It was agreed that with no agenda to discuss and issue mandates on the delegate should use her own discretion and reportback afterwards
- Treasurer -Members were reminded that there are standing orders available for a further 42 numbers on the lotto should members wish to take one on. These are only open to labour members. The new treasurer would be required to produce a financial plan for the forthcoming year and to consult with branches. Leigh Redman was Bridgwater treasurer, Paul Meagre, West Som.
- Membership – Mick Lerry reported 456(Bridgwater) 281(West Som) = 737.
- Bridgwater Branch – Gary Tucker said BW branch had been very active through the summer with increased grassroots action. 4 groups had been set up -Campaigning, social,writing and fundraising. There would be an autumn campaign on workers rights plus the Branch would organise a street stall.
- West Somerset Branch -Katherine See said they’d had a quiet summer but had a well attended august meeting about Frack Free Somerset. They had also bought a printer. There had been various campaigns including foodbanks and adult education. On 10 Oct they would show the film ‘Suffragette’.
- Women’s officer Chelsea Chadwick had been very active in campaigning against SDC over non-gender specific titles. SDC had resisted but BTC had supported her and introduced such.
- Trade Union Liaison officer John Thwaites reminded members about a likely postal strike with ballot closing in October. The GMC would support such a strike.
- Press officer – Brian Smedley said the Somerset Labour website was the main means for sending out statements from the party and anyone wishing to submit anything could send to him and he would put it out and then mail out to c.1,000 recipients including all regional and national press.
- Election updates– Chelsea Chadwick had come second in the North Petherton Town Council by election. A second by election there would be held on 23rd Nov
- Motion from Bridgwater Branch 1 “Vigorous and well-organised national and local campaigning are vital if we are to educate voters about Labour Party policies and build the Labour vote at national and local levels. The publicity materials produced by the Labour Party at national level are vital to this work and they are available for local parties to order at reasonable prices.In some cases, however, it would be useful to adapt the materials for use in a particular locality: for example by inserting contact information, details of local meetings, or case-studies linking national and local policy issues.To this end, this branch believes that all campaign literature produced at Head Office should be made available to CLPs in pdf format, so they could be adapted to apply to local campaigns. This Branch asks the CLP to refer this matter to the national Labour Party for immediate action. PROPOSED: Glen Burrows. AGREED
- Motion from Bridgwater Branch 2 “That the CLP becomes a co-signatory to a letter to the NEC (proposed by Dorset CLPs) that urges the NEC to allow all CLPs to begin the selection procedure of our Prospective Parliamentary Candidate immediately. AGREED
- Dates and venues of 2017/18 meetings wed 29TH November 2017 7.30 Friends Meeting House (Minehead) Wed 17th Jan 2018 7.30 Unity House (Bridgwater) Wed 21st March 2018 7.30 FMH (Minehead) Wed 16 May (AGM) 7.30 Unity House (Bridgwater)