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Street Stalls in Loughborough - The Experience So Far

April 13, 2016 9:00 PM
By Carolyn Mann
Originally published by East Midlands Liberal Democrats

Like so many other people, I joined the Lib Dems last year, just after the election. One of the main reasons for joining was that I am (and always have been) very pro-EU and I wanted to stand up for that. Once I knew that we were going to have a referendum, I started dreaming about being on a street stall, getting the pro-EU message out.

I joined Stronger In at the start of this year and said that I really wanted to do a street stall. Being a member of the local party, I obviously enlisted their support. Our first stall was Saturday, 20 February, right after the announcement of the date of the referendum.

There were 7 of us in Loughborough Market Place, supported by Roxanne Ellis from Stronger In. It was a cold, wet day and the leaflets got a bit soggy (I have discovered that leaflets dry out very well in the airing cupboard). The "Outers" were also in the Market, carrying a huge banner - which upset the market traders who complained to the Market Office.

The crowds were always polite but you could feel the hostility. Of those that were willing to engage with us, about 50% were for in and 50% were for out. This is roughly what you might expect in Loughborough Market Place on a Saturday morning, given the demographic.

Our second stall was on 2 April, this time there were 8 of us on the stall, but a different selection of people came, it was very cross party (and no party). In true Lib Dems tradition it was also a very diverse group, the youngest was still at school and we also had a gent in his eighties. The crowds were much more sympathetic. Perhaps the (slightly) better weather helped!

Our next stall will be on 23 April, which is St George's Day. As has been pointed out to me, St George is a saint from the Middle East, so perhaps he counts as an early migrant!

We are also considering doing a Lib Dem In Together stall on 14 May as per Phil Knowles message, but it will probably be in a different market town in our constituency, so as to avoid any confusion with the Stronger In stall.

Carolyn Mann
Tel: 01509 415733
Email: carolynatquorn@btinternet.com