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Southampton Liberal Democrats headerWelcome

Southampton Civic Centre

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.

As you know, Liberal Democrats Campaigners and Focus Teams work all year round to improve your community. If there is any way we can be of help, please do get in touch!

If you share our passion for working for local people and believe in the Liberal Democrats aims, why not join us? By being a member you keep in touch with the Party throughout the year, join us at our regular social events, and get a vote in all Party Elections.

News

  • plasticbags
    Article: Jan 12, 2018

    The Liberal Democrats have accused the Conservatives of having to "close their own loopholes" on the 5p plastic bag charge, after the Government announced plans to extend the charge to cover nearly all retailers.

    Restrictions on the plastic bag charge were imposed by the Conservatives in coalition, despite backing from the Liberal Democrats, charities and business groups to remove all exemptions.

    Liberal Democrat Environment Spokesperson Tim Farron said:

    "Liberal Democrats introduced the 5p charge on plastic bags in Government, despite reluctance from the Conservatives who insisted on exemptions.

    "The Tories are now being forced to close their own loopholes.

    "Reducing plastic waste is essential if we are to protect our oceans and marine life.

    "The Government must end all exemptions for the plastic bag charge, and introduce a similar charge on coffee cups immediately."

    Southampton Lib Dem Environment Spokesperson Jill Baston added:

    "In Coalition, the Liberal Democrats proposed the 5p levy on plastic bags, but the Conservatives watered down the policy. Now, they're trying to claim credit for removing their own restrictions!

    "The Liberal Democrats campaigned in the 2015 General Election to remove the Tory exemptions, and whilst we welcome this u-turn from Theresa May's flagging governement, it is regrettable that they were implemented in the first place."

  • Ben & Layla
    Article: Jan 11, 2018
    By South Central Region Liberal Democrats

    Booking is now open for South Central's Spring Conference, which takes place on Saturday 24th February 2018.

    The conference will be at The Forest School, Robinhood Lane Winnersh, Berkshire RG41 5NE, which is next to Winnersh train station, and very close to main bus routes.

    Key speakers will be Layla Moran MP and Lord Ben Stoneham. There will be training, fringes, debates, and stalls, and plenty of opportunties to talk to fellow Lib Dems.

    South Central membership officer Prue Bray says "Regional Conference is a great way to meet other Lib Dems from your area, to get training and to find out more about the Lib Dems.

    "You can hear from great speakers, ask questions and join in the debates. Everyone is friendly and welcoming. And in the best tradition of Lib Dem events, we even have a raffle.

    "It's relatively inexpensive, not too far to travel, and as accessible to everyone as we can make it. If you haven't been before, I recommend you try it."

    The cost is £20 if you book by 17th February, and only £10 for students, those on a low income and 1st time attendees.

    You can book online or download a printable form here - all the details you need are on the form.

  • Vince Cable, Jeremy Corbyn's empty chair
    Article: Jan 10, 2018

    Liberal Democrat leader Vince Cable attended the Single Market Summit this morning, the start of a cross-party initiative between opposition party leaders to oppose the Conservatives' hard Brexit. To the anger of many Labour MPs, Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn refused to attend.

    Commenting, Liberal Democrat leader Vince Cable said:

    "This is a good, positive step to parliamentary co-ordination between opposition parties against the Conservative Brexit. There are four parties here who are putting their political differences to one side for the good of the country.

    "I would urge the Labour leadership to do the same and get involved - their membership and most of their MPs would like them to fight to remain in the Single Market and Customs Union."

  • Article: Jan 5, 2018

    MPs on the Environmental Audit Committee have published a report backing Liberal Democrat calls for a charge on disposable coffee cups.

    The Committee has called on the Government to introduce a 25p levy on disposable coffee cups and a target to ensure they are all recycled by 2023.

    The Liberal Democrats have been campaigning for a charge on coffee cups since September 2016, and were the only party to include the policy in their 2017 Manifesto.

    The policy would build on the success of the 5p charge on plastic bags introduced by the Liberal Democrats in government, which has slashed usage in England by over 80%.

    Liberal Democrat Environment Spokesperson Tim Farron said:

    "I'm glad our call for a coffee cup charge is gaining traction.

    "The evidence is clear that these levies work - the 5p charge on plastic bags has massively reduced usage and helped protect our environment.

    "The government must introduce a levy on disposable coffee cups as soon as possible, starting with its own catering services.

    "Every day that ministers sit and do nothing, another half-a-million cups will end up needlessly littering our towns and countryside."

  • Pint & Politics 10-1-18
    Article: Jan 3, 2018
    By Southampton Liberal Democrats
    Join us for our first Pint & Politics social of 2018!

    Our new Executive Committee have now formally taken up their roles, so come along to meet some of the team and find out about our plans for the year, and how you might be able to be involved in our campaigning - including the City Council elections in May.

    This is an ideal opportunity for everyone to find out a little more about what we're doing, in a friendly social environment.

    Members, non-members and supporters welcome!

    Details can be found on our Facebook Page.
  • Vince Cable MP visits Society of St James, Southampton. With Ben Curd, Thomas Gravatt, and Eleanor Bell
    Article: Jan 2, 2018

    Over 11,000 homes across the country have been sitting empty for ten years or more, research by the Liberal Democrats has revealed.

    Vince Cable has said it is a "national scandal" that so many homes are being left empty when the country is in the midst of a worsening homelessness crisis.

    The figures, uncovered through Freedom of Information responses from 276 local councils, show that there are over 216,000 homes across the country that have been empty for six months or more. Of these, 60,000 had been empty for two years or more, 23,000 for five years or more, and over 11,000 have stood empty for at least ten years.

    The research also shows that just one in thirteen councils are making use of Empty Dwelling Management Orders (EDMO), powers used by local authorities to take over properties that have been empty for at least six months. Only 19 of the 247 councils in England and Wales that responded (the powers do not apply in Scotland) had used an EDMO in the past five years. Of these only six had used one in the past year.

    In total, councils returned around 23,000 empty homes back into use, including through direct action and the work of empty home teams. The Liberal Democrats are calling for reform of EDMOs and stronger powers for local councils to bring long-term empty homes back into use.

    The areas with the largest number of homes empty for six months or more were Durham (6,502), Leeds (5,724), Bradford (4,144), Cornwall (3,273) and Liverpool (3,093). Many of these areas also suffer from high levels of homelessness.

    Liberal Democrat Leader Vince Cable commented:

    "At a time when the homelessness crisis is worsening and more and more people are sleeping out in the cold on our streets, it is a national scandal that thousands of homes across the country are sitting empty.

    "These homes could be turned into affordable places to live for some of the most vulnerable people in our society.

    "The Government needs to urgently review the current system which is clearly not working.

    "Councils need to be given the powers and resources to bring empty homes back into use .

    "This must form part of a wider package to tackle the housing crisis, including building more homes on unused public sector land and clamping down on land-banking."

    Southampton Liberal Democrat Housing Spokesperson Simon Stokes added:

    "Homelessness is an increasingly visible issue in Southampton. According to figures obtained by the Liberal Democrats, there are currently 615 empty homes in the city - 168 of which have been empty for at least two years.

    "The Labour-run city council are failing some of the most vulnerable members of society by not making proper use of EDMOs
    to bring those empty properties back into residential use."

  • Article: Jan 2, 2018

    Liberal Democrat leader Vince Cable has released his New Year message, emphasising his ambition to mobilise the strength of the party's 100,000 membership to win the arguments on the major issues facing the country.

    He highlights

    • the need to convince the government to build thousands of affordable homes so that younger generations are no longer cut off from the housing market
    • the urgency of properly funding a woefully underinvested NHS - the Liberal Democrats argue for a penny in the pound on income tax for the NHS and social care;
    • the need to win the argument for an Exit from Brexit, but democratically, through a public vote on the terms of the divorce and any EU trade deal.
  • Tom Brake (By Chris McAndrew - https://api20170418155059.azure-api.net/photo/bhDYT87s.jpeg?crop=CU_1:1&quality=80&download=trueGallery: https://beta.parliament.uk/media/bhDYT87s, CC BY 3.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=61321850)
    Article: Dec 21, 2017

    Liberal Democrat efforts to enshrine in law a vote on the final Brexit deal was defeated by the Tories after Labour failed to show up.

    The Lib Dem amendment to the EU Withdrawal Bill, if it had been passed, would have seen the people have a final say on the deal Theresa May brought back from Brussels. The amendment would give voters the choice to accept the final Brexit deal or remain in the EU and opened the possibility of an exit from Brexit.

    The Liberal Democrats would campaign to remain in the EU in any referendum on the deal, as they believe no deal the government could negotiate would be better than the one currently enjoyed as a member of the EU.

    Commenting following the vote, Liberal Democrat Brexit Spokesperson Tom Brake said:

    "This is a shameful showing from the Labour party. They are meant to be opposing the government, but instead they are clocking off early for Christmas.

    "Once again the Labour leadership have failed to take a stand over Brexit. They claim they are standing up for the many, but as soon as the opportunity comes to give the people a say on the nation's future, they pull a sickie.

    "The Liberal Democrats are the only party consistently bringing the fight to the government over Brexit. It is vital that at the end of this process, the people are given a say on the final deal and have the opportunity to exit from Brexit."

  • Ben Curd
    Article: Dec 20, 2017
    By Southampton Liberal Democrats

    Southampton campaigner Ben Curd remarks on Southampton Itchen MP Royston Smith's recent comments on road safety for cyclists, in which he appears to blame cyclists for causing accidents on our roads:

    "It was with a feeling of consternation that I read Conservative MP Royston Smith's comments regarding the safety of cyclists in the City. At best, the comments were ill judged. At worst, they're downright offensive to a whole group of road users.

    "According to Smith, "Sometimes cyclists must use their judgement and try and stick to routes that have cycle lanes on them". I believe what he meant to say was that steps must be taken to ensure the safety of all road users along EVERY route.

    "When he suggested that "it's dangerous for cyclists on certain roads and that they may need to consider when and where they cycle", I'm sure he meant to say that the fact that it's dangerous for cyclists on certain roads is totally unacceptable.

    "Finally, instead of proclaiming "The cycling lobby won't like this but we have to do something to make the roads safer," he should have insisted on working with the cycling lobby to do something to make our roads safer"

    "Tragedies like the death of the cyclist on Portsmouth Road must be a catalyst for change, and putting the blame on the most vulnerable and at-risk is a typical Conservative response. Smith should be ashamed of himself."

    Thousands of commuters, school children and others use bicycles on Southampton's roads every day.

  • Catherine Bearder with police officers
    Article: Dec 20, 2017

    The Liberal Democrats have criticised the government after it emerged the Home Office police grant for 2018-19 will remain exactly the same as this year, meaning police forces will see the equivalent of a £125m real-terms cut once inflation is taken into account.

    £270m of the additional funding the government is claiming to be investing in the police will depend on local Police and Crime Commissioners raising the police precept in their areas, which the Liberal Democrats have branded a "stealth council tax rise."

    Liberal Democrat Home Affairs Spokesperson Ed Davey commented: