EXCLUSIVE : A Clean Sweep for the New Momentum Broom in Birkenhead CLP


… but all is not as rosy as it may seem. For a start it would seem that former Wirral councillor Louise Reecejones (LRJ) – No. 6 in the above picture –  is back in a position of power and influence as Birkenhead Constituency Labour Party (CLP) ‘ Diversity Officer’ . Yes, the same LRJ who was as you can read here was removed as Secretary of Disability Labour earlier this year as Labour Party members had deemed her position had become ‘untenable and unworkable’.

However we leave the expert analysis to a Labour Party insider who attended the Birkenhead CLP Annual General Meeting (AGM) on Friday 28 September . Whilst we’ve always maintained that the only way that the local Labour Party could rehabilitate itself locally ,having been brought so low by a corrupt cabal , was by its own members holding them to account. The jury is out on whether these latest developments are the way forward. As you can see it’s a view that is shared by ‘Red Eye’ our eyewitness at the Birkenhead CLP AGM :

So, it was a clean sweep for the Left with the old guard well and truly swept aside.
Predictably there was much self-congratulation going around on the Left. Some of it deserved but perhaps satisfaction rather than congratulations was more appropriate.

There is no question that Corbyn has caused there to be a dramatic increase in
membership in Birkenhead; it has more than doubled. But this has not translated to increased attendance at meetings – to be fair not an uncommon feature across
England and Wales.

Friday’s success was claimed by John Maher, Birkenhead CLP Secretary, the self-styled leader of the purge, as a masterclass in organisation.

The real reason for Friday night’s success was not down to some Left-wing uprising but down to a dramatic collapse in the old guard/opposition to the Left when compared to the previous year. Last year the ‘old guard’ attracted 80-100 votes compared to around 70 for the Left. But on Friday whilst the Left’s vote was broadly unchanged from the previous year the old-guard’s vote fell to around 40 or so.

No doubt the direction of the Labour Party nationally has heartened local socialists.The truth is that the Wirral ‘old guard’ are in disarray. Disheartened Blairites, the old guard councillor club and St Frank Field fan club are waving the white flag. For them accountability is an ugly word and they would rather remain at arm’s length from the accountability that party activists are beginning to demand.

So, it seems we are at last beginning to a new broom sweeping through Labour locally. Perhaps that is no bad thing as there is surely many decent and earnest people are amongst them. But there are some warnings signs too and grumbles are beginning to emerge.

As reported recently in the national Press, John Maher, self-styled leader of the group has a somewhat chequered history of party allegiance and embrace of democracy. As  Wirral Leaks  reported in 2016 here Maher has his own way of doing things and isn’t best pleased if you disagree with him. The prize at stake in Birkenhead is of course the Parliamentary Candidature. The NEC has given the go ahead for Birkenhead to proceed with an open selection.

John Maher has made no secret that Cllr Tony Norbury is his man for the job. Cllr Norbury has been quick to defend Maher when accusations of bullying and intimidation have been made by old guard councillors in the national Press. They seem to be a formidable tag team. So, is it a forgone conclusion that Cllr Norbury will become the MP? Will anyone have the temerity to challenge the anointing of Norbury? Will the resurgent Left in Birkenhead have a democratic choice of socialist candidates or will they do as Maher tells them? The prize is indeed great. Let’s hope they choose wisely and from a wide field of worthy candidates

Red Eye

7 thoughts on “EXCLUSIVE : A Clean Sweep for the New Momentum Broom in Birkenhead CLP

  1. #3 is, in fact… me. I’m not an EC delegate, or anything to do with running the CLP. Although I do have the honour of having my name redacted by The Daily Fail on Sunday.

    I wouldn’t say Corbyn has “more than doubled” membership of Birkenhead and Tranmere branch. In 2013 membership stood at 6. Today it stands at a much more respectable 150+. By my maths, that’s about a twenty five fold increase in membership, isn’t it?

    And, no… I’m not a Trotskyist Entryist. Firstly, I’m a Maoist, and secondly, I’ve been here all along.

    • Hello Mr Smiley,

      Do you remember the words ‘No to Polaris’ painted on the wall of Cammel Laird shipyard?

      Or am the only the only one in the whole of Birko (and the greater environs of Wirral) to do so….

      • Well, seeing as the final Resolution class boat, S27 Revenge, was launched before my first birthday over 50 years ago, that would be difficult. However, I believe my opposition to the Dreadnought class boats (the boats replacing the boats that replaced the two built at Cammell Laird) is a matter of record.

  2. Pingback: Fieldwatch 2 – The Clash of the Messiahs | Wirralleaks

  3. So, John Maher (former aide-de-camp) to Blessed Frank has changed his spots once again… Formerly Treasurer of Wirral Greens….and… In 2015 lambasted Norbury as a clown jester during Wirral Libraries closure public forum at Wallasey Central Library… There goes an opportunist if every there was one and a turncoat to those truly on the left… Beware of one who helped FF clear militants out of Birkenhead CLP!

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