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GLD NEWS Page

See our twitter at: https://twitter.com/intent/user?screen_name=GreenLibdems

And see our Links page for other news sources

See also News from the Liberal Democrats


Green Liberal Democrats: Recent News Articles

  • Vince Cable
    Article: Jul 20, 2017

    Vince Cable is the new leader of the Liberal Democrats, unopposed at the close of nominations. Read his manifesto here.

  • Article: Jul 20, 2017

    South Lakeland MP Tim Farron has today expressed his disappointment that the DEFRA Minister Michael Gove MP refused to commit to protecting local farmers by introducing a Hill Farm Allowance. Figures show that without this support many farmers will be forced out of business.

    Tim challenged the Minister to introduce the Hill Farm Allowance in the House of Commons today. He pointed out that without the subsidies currently provided by the EU, the average hill farm business income for 2015/16 was minus £10,700.

  • Lord William Wallace (Alan Williams)
    Article: Jul 20, 2017
    By Caron Lindsay in Liberal Democrat Voice

    Saturday's Social Liberal Forum conference in London provided much food for thought as speakers challenged Liberal Democrat orthodoxy in various ways.

    Beveridge Lecture

    William Wallace kicked off proceedings by giving the annual William Beveridge Lecture. His theme was: Is a Liberal and Democratic society compatible with globalisation. His answer? Well, it disproportionately benefits the super rich and authoritarian states, so we have to change things to ensure that nobody is left out.

  • Surrey tips
    Article: Jul 20, 2017

    Following the launch of the 'consultation' on the future of Community Recycling Centres in Surrey which proposes the Closure of the Ranmore Road Tip in Dorking and three others in Surrey, the reduction in operating hours at Leatherhead and the other remaining tips and the imposition of further charges, Liberal Democrat Councillors have been working hard to oppose these proposals.

  • Frecklton solar farm
    Article: Jul 20, 2017

    Slowly but surely UK's railways are being electrified, but although switching from diesel to electricity increases energy efficiency considerably we still need to burn a lot of fossil fuel to make electricity. Reducing fossil fuel burn is becoming increasingly urgent and important and in some areas of the country through which trains run the grid can barely cope.

  • Jo Ruxton
    Article: Jul 16, 2017

    Cumbria MP Tim Farron yesterday evening took part in a discussion panel on environmental issues following the screening of the documentary film 'A Plastic Ocean', which highlights the growing problem of plastic waste in the oceans.

    The event, held at the Brewery Arts Centre, saw hundreds of local residents watch a screening of the film which documents the shocking consequences of plastic pollution and its impact on the environment, ecosystems and human health.

  • Joe Bourke, ALTER Chairman
    Article: Jul 16, 2017
    By Joe Bourke in Liberal Democrat Voice

    The rioting in Hamburg on the occasion of the meeting of the G20 this month highlights the oftentimes violent confrontation that exists between alternative theories of capitalism and socialism, as represented by the established orthodoxy and those that would seek to tear it down.

    At the heart of this conflict lies differing interpretations of economic theory, often depicted simplistically as left v right; Keynes v Hayek; socialism v capitalism; social liberalism v economic liberalism; or progressives v conservatives.

  • Jeremy Hilton
    Article: Jul 16, 2017

    Liberal Democrats have today secured support from members of the Council's Environment and Community Scrutiny Committee to create a cross-party working group to look at ways of reducing air pollution in Gloucestershire following publication of an independent report into air pollution levels outside county schools.

  • Solar Roads (dicegeorge.com)
    Article: Jul 10, 2017
    By Mariam Mahmood

    Road to a Green Future

    In December 2016, the building of the first solar panel road was completed in the French village of Tourouvre-au-Perche. This provides an excellent example of technological advancements being crucial in the fight against climate change.

    The solar panels (made by the French company Colas) are made of glass but will not crack under the weight of a truck. Being made from super-strong glass and covered in a resin containing silicon, these panels can withstand the weight of heavy vehicles - all while producing energy. Similar panels made by other companies also contain LED lights to show lines and signs without paint and can be heated to prevent ice and snow from building up on them. As if these technological specifics are not enough, the panels also have microprocessors which allows them to communicate with each other and their central control station.

  • Wingrove Bike Garden
    Article: Jul 10, 2017

    There are Bike Trains running from Monday 17th to Friday 21s July to help people avoid the likely disruption during the first few weeks of the Killingworth Road closure.

    Essentially it is a group ride on quiet roads and traffic-free paths starting in Fenham going to the Freeman Hospital / Benton Park View / Quorum depending on who is interested. It would be ideal for staff travelling from near Fenham and Gosforth who want to try cycling but maybe aren't so confident on the road or aren't sure of what routes to take.

  • Cllr Aspden near A19 Fulford
    Article: Jul 10, 2017

    Keith Aspden, Liberal Democrat Councillor for Fulford and Heslington, has reiterated his call for additional flood defence funding and works in Fulford.

    Earlier this year, Cllr Aspden collected signatures from Fulford residents for a petition that called for the completion of flood defence works in the area. Over 150 residents signed the petition, which was submitted to City of York Council and the Environment Agency.

  • Rainforest Trust logo (www.rainforesttrust.org)
    Article: Jul 5, 2017
    By Chris Redston, Chairman, Rainforest Trust UK

    As the world struggles to address the challenge of climate change, one simple and cost-effective solution to the problem is often overlooked. Protecting and restoring the planet's tropical rainforests could constitute half the solution to climate change, according to a peer-reviewed article in Nature. So why isn't rainforest protection central to the climate change debate, and how can we make more people aware of the role that rainforests play in the fight against global warming?

  • Kate Parminter (https://twitter.com/kateparminter)
    Article: Jun 26, 2017
    By Kate Parminter in The Independent

    Speaking to the Independent The Liberal Democrats' environment spokesperson Kate Parminter said: "With Michael Gove at the helm, we risk seeing any future environment strategy watered down and vital EU protections for our wildlife, habitats and air quality slashed after Brexit."

    Ms Parminter added: "Two years on, the Conservative's long-awaited environment strategy is still nowhere to be seen," she said. "Instead we have a dismal record of failure, with no real attempts to tackle air pollution, address water shortages or reduce the risk of flooding."

  • Fly tipped rubbish (Sally Morgan)
    Article: Jun 25, 2017

    Liberal Democrat county councillors in Surrey have expressed their anger and opposition to Tory plans to axe 4 Community Recycling Centres (CRCs) across the county. The plans follow on from the introduction of hugely unpopular charges to use the CRCs last year which were forced through by the Conservative Cabinet, despite widespread opposition by residents and Liberal Democrat county councillors.

  • Catherine Bearder MEP
    Article: Jun 25, 2017

    A lot can change in a year.

    On 23rd June 2016, I was left heartbroken after a tough and exhausting referendum campaign saw a victory for an insular nationalist vision of Britain.

    The vote to Leave has divided our country in a way even 'Project Fear' could never have imagined.

    After the referendum, we were told that the populist right was on an unstoppable rise. Geert Wilders, Netherland's answer to Donald Trump, would storm to victory in the Dutch general election; Marine Le Pen would triumph over the established political consensus in the French Presidential election; and the Liberal Democrats' fight to keep Britain in Europe was laughed off.

  • Andrew Clean Air Day
    Article: Jun 25, 2017

    Today is the first National Clean Air Day and Liberal Democrat Councillors in York are taking part. Air pollution increases the risk of heart disease, cancer, diabetes and asthma attacks, as well as being associated with dementia. The health burden of air pollution is unnecessary and National Clean Air Day is all about giving everyone the tools and inspiration to reduce pollution now.

  • Article: Jun 25, 2017

    Liberal Democrats have announced a new Shadow Cabinet. The party which gained seats in the election now have 12 MPs in the House of Commons.

    The team in the House of Commons are:

    Leader - Tim Farron MP
    Exiting the European Union; International Trade; First Secretary of State - Tom Brake MP
    Chancellor - Vince Cable MP
    Foreign Secretary - Jo Swinson MP
    Home Secretary - Ed Davey MP
    Health Secretary - Norman Lamb MP
    Education Secretary; Young People - Layla Moran MP
    Communities and Local Government; Refugees - Wera Hobhouse MP
    Culture, Media and Sport - Christine Jardine MP
    Work and Pensions - Stephen Lloyd MP
    Scotland - Jamie Stone MP
    Chief Whip; Northern Ireland - Alistair Carmichael MP

    Liberal Democrat Leader Tim Farron said:

    "I am delighted to announce our new shadow cabinet team, which brings together a wealth of experience. The party has people with a range of skills from within government, business and the charity sector.

    "Together we will provide the strong opposition Britain needs to stand up to this Conservative government."

  • Tim Farron
    Article: Jun 25, 2017

    We note with regret the resignation of Tim Farron as leader of the Liberal Democrats, and his comments outlining his personal difficulties in aligning private believes with public office.

    From the start of the election campaign Tim was hounded by both the media and high profile supporters of other parties who were intent on exposing and exploiting his assumed personal views, and isolating these from both the views of the party and his actions as both MP and Leader. By his own acknowledgement Tim failed to adequately answer such questions and they cast a shadow over the campaign. Nonetheless, LGBT+ Lib Dems were at the forefront of the efforts to defend Tim based on his proven track record of friendship and support for our rights.

  • Tom Brake MP
    Article: Jun 25, 2017

    The Liberal Democrats have vowed to oppose any attempts to weaken workplace rights, health and safety standards and environmental protections as part of the government's Repeal Bill.

    The party is also calling for proper oversight and transparency over the Repeal Bill, after the government's White Paper hinted at a power grab by ministers through the use of so-called Henry VIII powers.

  • york zero carbon (GreenLibDems.org.uk)
    Article: Jun 25, 2017

    June 2017 greenlibdem bulletin

    From mailchimp at: http://mailchi.mp/1ee74155eef2/latest-from-green-lib-dems

    Fellow members,
    Thanks for your support.
    please take a minute to have a read - see you in Bournemouth?
    Graham Neale,
    Chair, Green Liberal Democrats
    @grahamneale



    Welcome to our summer bulletin,
    please follow the links below for more information, and get in touch with any questions.

    It's great that we have 12 MPs, with a strong team across both Houses.

    We are starting to prepare for Autumn Conference. Formal notice will be going in the next few weeks, but GLD members are welcome and encouraged to stand for positions on our executive committee.

    The summer is well and truly upon us, bringing a spell of hot weather unprecedented in its length, and the worst fire in London since the 2nd world war. The Green Liberal Democrats join the whole country in mourning the seventy-nine victims of the Grenfell Tower fire.

    Of course, the fire rounded off a terrible week for this Tory government. Following the loss of her majority in the Commons, Theresa May's paired down Queen's Speech leaves much to be desired. GLD Executive member Steve Bolter's article on Green Points on Legislation mentioned in the Queen's Speech can be read here

  • Gas Flares (GreenLibDems.org.uk)
    Article: Jun 23, 2017
    By Steve Mason

    Briefing: Fracking - An attack on local democracy

    Though not in the Queen's speech, the changes proposed by the Conservative Party to the planning laws surrounding the development of onshore oil and gas exploration, plus the further commitment to develop the shale gas industry (fracking) are alarming.

  • Queen's Euro Hat (https://www.theguardian.com/fashion/2017/jun/21/queens-hat-alludes-to-brexit)
    Article: Jun 23, 2017
    By Steve Bolter

    Points on Legislation mentioned in the Queen's Speech June 2017

    The Repeal Bill will turn European Law into UK law and repeal the European Communities Act 1972. It will give the Tory government sweeping powers to change British law without votes in Parliament MPs; supposedly to allow for speedy technical editing out of references to EU institutions.

  • Wind Power (GreenLibDems.org.uk)
    Article: Jun 22, 2017
    By Julian Pycraft

    Mankind has managed to bring famine, plague and war under control due to phenomenal economic growth, which provides us with abundant food, medicine, energy and raw materials. But this same growth has destabilised the ecological equilibrium. Despite all talk of pollution, global warming and climate change, most countries have yet to make any serious economic sacrifices to improve the situation. Politicians choose growth over ecological stability. To avoid catastrophe and survive, mankind has to acknowledge and address the enormous environmental challenges ahead.

    Scientific progress and economic growth take place within a sensitive biosphere, and as they gather steam, the shock waves destabilise the ecology. Progress and growth is destroying the ecosystem, wiping out fauna, flora, forests, seas and posing an existential threat to humans. An ecological meltdown will cause economic ruin, political turmoil, a fall in human standards of living and threaten the very existence of human civilisation. There is no justice in history. When disaster strikes, the poor almost always suffer far more than the rich, even if the rich caused the tragedy in the first place. Some of the refugee flows into Europe originate not only from conflict, but also from places where there are food shortages, which will get far worse as climate change continues.

    Food production is the leading driver of greenhouse emissions, even larger than energy production. The path to a sustainable future will require unleashing the creative power of our best scientists, engineer, entrepreneurs, backed by public and private investment, to deploy new innovations in climate-smart agriculture. Better seeds, better storage, crops that use less water, grow in harsher climates, mobile technologies that put more agriculture date - satellite imagery, weather forecasting and market prices - into the farmer's hands. We can help ensure food security, producing the food to produce billions of people and not destroy the planet in in the process.

    We need to create a food culture that encourages a demand for healthier, more sustainable food, alleviating huge increasing medical costs such as obesity. We need to set aside politics in favour of clean air, sustainable food and water. People naturally understand the connection between smokestacks and energy production and greenhouse gases. Most people aren't as familiar with the impact of cows and methane. Animal agriculture and its by-products contributes to 51% ("Cowspiracy") of global greenhouse gases when our entire transportation; cars, trucks, trains, planes all put together which contributes 13%. Animal agriculture is clearing 1-2 acres of rainforest every second, making it responsible for 91% of the Amazon destruction. 110 animal and insect species are lost every day from rainforest destruction, animal agriculture now making itself the leading cause of species extinction, ocean dead zones, water pollution and habitat destruction,

    Renewable technologies use natural energy to make electricity - including wind, wave, marine, hydro, biomass and solar. These renewables currently produce over 20% of the UK's electricity and whilst that figure is slowly rising there is a greater need from them if climate change is to be reduced.

    The highest safe level of carbon dioxide in our atmosphere is 350 parts per million. We're now at 400. Air pollution causes 40,000 premature deaths each year as well as all the health risks involved it also has a catastrophic effect on our environment, contributing to acid rain, haze, ozone depletion, effects on wildlife, crop and forest damage, global climate change and more.

    Increasing air pollution increases climate change and adds to global warming. It's been calculated that the least we could hope to do without it having catastrophic implications as far as drought, famine and other disasters are concerned would be around a 2 degree increase in temperature which we are rapidly approaching and with all the built-in carbon dioxide that's in the atmosphere we're easily going to exceed that. If action isn't taken now it won't be until whole countries go under water because of sea level rise and whole countries find that there's so much drought that they can't feed their population and as a result they need to desperately migrate to another country or worse, invade another country. There could be potential climate wars in the future.

    One of climate change's biggest victims are our oceans. Oceans regulate our Earth's temperature and provide 50% of the World's oxygen. The Earth's oceans have increased in temperature. One of these consequences is the increase in ocean acidification. This is the direct effect of dissolved Co2. This higher acid content is putting the entire ocean food chain at risk also. 80.4 million metric tons of fish are pulled from the ocean each year, it's bad news for the one billion people that rely on the ocean as its primary source of protein.

    There's not one solution to climate change. We need to live by the assumption that what is good for the world, is good for us. We're part of the cause, we can also be part of the solution

    Julian Pycraft

  • Mariam Mahmood - Scots LibDem Environment spokesman (Mariam Mahmood)
    Article: Jun 15, 2017
    By Mariam Mahmood (Environment Spokesperson at Scottish Liberal Democrats)

    With Donald Trump backing out of the Paris Agreement and Michael Gove being appointed as the Environment Secretary, it seems that the environment is low on the political agenda and is falling further. Climate change certainly wasn't the hot topic during the snap General Election and Gove is unlikely to push it further up the agenda.

  • Liberal Democrat MPs elected June 2017
    Article: Jun 13, 2017

    Introducing the new Liberal Democrat team of 12 MPs, representing constituencies from Orkney to Eastbourne.

    Thank you for each and every vote for the Liberal Democrats nationally, and to everyone who has helped the Liberal Democrat campaign in any way in these seats and across the country.

    • Tom Brake, Carshalton
    • Vince Cable, Twickenham
    • Alistair Carmichael, Orkney and Shetland
    • Edward Davey, Kingston and Surbiton
    • Tim Farron, Westmorland and Lonsdale
    • Wera Hobhouse, Bath
    • Christine Jardine, Edinburgh West
    • Norman Lamb, North Norfolk
    • Stephen Lloyd, Eastbourne
    • Layla Moran, Oxford West and Abingdon
    • Jamie Stone, Caithness
    • Jo Swinson, Dunbartonshire East
  • GDP Increases - Oxford Economics (Oxford Economics)
    Article: Jun 13, 2017
    The Economist, the prestigious business affairs weekly with a global circulation and high reputation among businessmen in every country, has endorsed the Liberal Democrats in the UK General Election.
    They wrote,
    "No party passes with flying colours. But the closest is the Liberal Democrats. Brexit is the main task of the next government and they want membership of the Single Market and Free Movement .
    They are more honest than the Tories about the need to raise taxes for public services - and they are more sensible than Labour, spreading the burden rather than leaning only on high-earners. Unlike Labour they would reverse the Tories' most regressive welfare cuts. They are on the right side of other issues: devolution of power away from London, reform of the voting system and of the House of Lords."
    "Against a backward-looking Labour Party and an inward-looking Tory party about to compound its historic mistake over Brexit, They get our vote"
    Consider a vote for the Liberal Democrats as a down-payment for the future."
    The Liberal Democrats' costed policy proposals have been judged by the Institute of Fiscal Studies as fairer and more practical than either the Tory or the Labour Party plans.
    Oxford Economics have calculated that the Liberal Democrat policies produce a better increase in GDP by 2021 than the other parties' proposals.
    And Bob Geldof also backs the Liberal Democrats.
    Vote Liberal Democrat and you'll be in good company!
  • Article: Jun 6, 2017
    By Rhondda Cynon Taff Welsh Liberal Democrats

    As the general election fast approaches candidates in RCT and elsewhere are getting lots of emails form people concerned about the environment and wanting to know what our policies are. As Liberal Democrats we believe that the environment must be at the top of the agenda, locally, nationally and globally. Climate change threatens our everyday lives and Liberal Democrats are determined that the UK should lead the fight against climate change on the international arena. We certainly cannot depend on Trump and his cronies to do anything.

  • Adrian by Christchurch Park
    Article: Jun 6, 2017

    Former Liberal Democrat Secretary of State for Climate Change Ed Davey, one of the main movers behind the Paris Agreement, has responded to Theresa May's refusal to join our European partners in protesting against the Trump announcement.

    Ed Davey said:

    "We've already heard a very strong statement from the Germans, the French and the Italians.

  • Article: Jun 6, 2017

    He stressed it is still possible to stop a self-destructive Brexit that would damage Britain's economy and security, and that the country needs Liberal Democrat MPs who will fight to stay in the single market and give people the chance to vote on the final deal.

    He said in the speech:

    On May and Corbyn colluding over Brexit

  • Jeanie Falcolner (https://www.facebook.com/jeanie4northherefordshire/)
    Article: Jun 3, 2017
    By Jeanie Falconer

    18 months ago it seemed that there was a concensus on taking climate change seriously. Climate Change and pollution are not just an environmental issue but an economic and security issue too. But Brexit and Donald Trump's isolationism and populism in the US might well halt that progress.

    In Coalition the Liberal Democrats oversaw the trebling of renewable energy production, we established the world's first Green Investment Bank, we invested in green technologies and home improvements.

  • The UN's 17 Sustainable Development Goals projected onto their head quarters
    Article: May 31, 2017

    Forty-Five Years Since Stockholm, Twenty-Five Years Since the Earth Summit and Five Years Since Rio+20

    In an article for the Interpress News Service Felix Dodds reviews where we are and the state of the discourse on sustainable development.

    "In the same way that banks succeeded at privatizing the profits and socializing the losses as they led the global economy to the brink of collapse, my worry going forward is this: are we allowing the same to happen to the environment? Humanity has taken a huge leap over recent decades that has made us more interconnected than ever before - we need to behave as a global civilization as to not face catastrophic consequences.

  • Mark Pack (Mark Pack)
    Article: May 21, 2017

    Mark Pack writes today :

    "An updated version of my 'what the Lib Dems believe' digital graphic is now out, and designed for much better compatibility with mobile devices

    - http://www.markpack.org.uk/libdem-beliefs/

    It's designed more for supporters rather than floating voters, as it emphasises what makes us Liberal Democrats rather than our immediate solutions to the most pressing issues of the moment, although Europe etc. of course do get a mention.

    Hope you find it useful!"

  • Tim Farron
    Article: May 17, 2017

    The Liberal Democrats have launched their manifesto for a brighter future.

    Change Britain's Future is a plan for a fairer Britain where people are decent to each other, with good schools and hospitals, a clean environment and an innovative economy.

    Nothing is more important to our children's future than Brexit. A bad Brexit deal, with Britain outside the single market, will wreck the future for our children, our economy and our schools and hospitals. That's why at the heart of the manifesto is a commitment to give the people the final say on the Brexit deal in a referendum.

  • Air Pollution Crisis in Central Manchester
    Article: May 14, 2017

    The Conservative Government predict a steady decline in NO2 levels sufficient to render the Greater Manchester AQMA obsolete by the year 2020, due to the NO2 levels falling everywhere below the UK/EU legal limit of an annual average threshold value of 40 micrograms per cubic metre (40 μg m-3).

    The Government prediction was largely based on the replacement of the more polluting diesel and petrol engines by the Euro-6 engines for all new cars, buses and trucks. The national fall in NO2 levels is indeed happening, albeit slower-than-expected due to the 'Dieselgate' scandal and unbridled optimism.

  • Tim Farron addressing tens of thousands of pro-EU demonstrators outside Parliament.
    Article: May 13, 2017
    By The Voice in Liberal Democrat Voice

    Tim Farron's leader interview with ITV's Julie Etchingham was broadcast on Monday night.

    In it, he talked about his early life, his family, his friends and his vision for the country.

    In essence, he talked about wanting to lead us to a place where we were all decent to each other and where nobody had to hide who they are.

  • Nick Clegg
    Article: May 13, 2017
    By Caron Lindsay in Liberal Democrat Voice

    Call Clegg made a comeback on Tuesday. During the coalition years, Nick Clegg took questions every Thursday morning on LBC. The banter with Nick Ferrari resumed on Tuesday for an election special

    Watch Nick defend the proposal for a referendum on the Brexit deal

    Nick Ferrari suggested that he was defying the will of the people. Nick responded:

  • Austin car like brexit
    Article: May 13, 2017

    In an editorial criticising the Prime Minister's approach to Brexit talks the Observer's editor writes:

    "It is time for May to wake up and stop dancing to the ignorantly chauvinistic, jingoistic tunes of the discredited Eurosceptic right. A good start in re-establishing trust and goodwill would be a unilateral guarantee of the rights of EU citizens in the UK. It is outrageous that they, and Britons living in the EU, are still unsure of their fate. May should also end the absurd pretence that Britain can escape paying an EU leaving bill.

  • canadian flag with cannabis leaf
    Article: May 13, 2017

    The Liberal Democrats plan to break the grip of criminal gangs and protect young people by introducing a legal, regulated market for cannabis.

    Why are we doing this?

    Because the current approach to cannabis has been a catastrophic failure.

    Unregulated cannabis is freely available and widely used, generating significant mental and psychical health problems - especially for young people - who are being harmed by increasingly potent products.

  • Document: May 8, 2017
    6.98 MiB drawing or desktop publishing document

    This report presents findings of a rapid study undertaken at the urgent request of Jane Brophy, the Liberal Democrat candidate in the upcoming mayoral elections for Greater Manchester.

    The objectives of the study was to shed more light on the invisible NO2 air pollution on the campus of Manchester Metropolitan University (MMU). Jane Brophy was concerned about the presence throughout the MMU Campus of abundant prominent colonies of the nitrophilic Sunburst Lichen Xanthoria parietina recorded in a major report by an environmental team released in October 2016 on the Researchgate website.

    The LibDem mayoral candidate required the study to be completed in haste, not only due to the impending mayoral elections on May 4th, but more particularly due to the UK Supreme Court ruling that the Conservative Government must publish by April 24th its updated National NO2 Plan and subject it to public consultation. As ruled by the Supreme Court, the urgency of updating the National NO2 Plan was to ensure that the Conservative Government reduced the NO2 faster in order to mitigate the breach of UK 'air law' which derives from the EU 'air law'. Both in turn derive from the guidelines of the World Health Organisation (WHO).

  • Article: May 8, 2017

    Please register to vote - not voting is half a vote to the UKIP/Conservatives

    Here's the new film from the Liberal Democrats, a handy guide to getting on the electoral register (which, despite many media reports, is the trendy thing to do these days as the register has recently reached a record level )