Thursday, 9 May 2013

50 years of Ronnie and counting

guess the date?
I'm writing this in the certain belief that Ronnie Fearn 'doesn't do computers'. 2013 marks his 50 years as a Southport Councillor and tonight at the Mayor Making there will be presentation to mark that achievement.So if you bump into him before the meeting this evening don't spoil the surprise.

 I did start writing up a fuller history of his contribution but it began to sound like an obituary and that seemed totally inappropriate as Ronnie is still very much alive. But just consider 50 years, 24 years longer that Alex Ferguson, and he topped the poll in Norwood Ward last May.

There are at least two Councillors still living in the town who pre date Ronnie. Joy Lucas who was a Councillor in Park Ward between 1957 and 1960 and Bob Burnett Hughes who was on the Council between 1958 and 1973. When Ronnie arrived on the scene we had by my calculations reached our high water mark* with 23 Councillors out of 45 with 100% representation in Central, Craven,  Scarisbrick, West, Birkdale South, Ainsdale, two councillors in Hesketh and a Councillor in  Birkdale West (J. Smith-Hughes), Marine  (M Goldberg)and Park (John Campion)  with around 4 Aldermen. 

I noticed Southport Labour Party were drawing attention to their Parliamentary Candidate during this time -one John Prescot. This was at the time of the pact so there were five Wards which we left to Labour. For those not familiar with Southport politics there was a strict Lib/Lab pact in the town. We fought 10 wards and Labour 5. We even helped in each others by elections! Richard Wainwright was always fond of drawing attention to this arrangement to balance the coverage given to the pacts in Bolton and Huddersfield. When the time finally comes when Ronnie decides to step down one of the important bits of history that will be told is Ronnie's part in the breaking of the pact

Anyway, congratulations to Ronnie-and remember not a word to him if you see him today

* 23 out of 45 Councillors is the highest number of Councillors we have achieved but by another measure I guess you could say that winning 6 out of the present 7 wards in the town in 2012 was a better performance or again you might think 1981 when we won 5 of the 6 county wards was better

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