Saturday and we joint a different bunch of local volunteers, comrades from Hope not Hate along with Will Scobie our candidate in the fight to see off ukip and their so called leader. You can read more about his campaigning here. Once upon a time Thanet South wasn’t on our target list. Now with the departure of the sitting Tory, and the advent of ukip’s leader as their candidate we have a three way marginal – and an opportunity to push back ukip where it will hurt them the most.
Teams are soon off out to different parts of the constituency. We’re in St Peter’s ward, Broadstairs, currently represented on the council by two tories and one ukip councillor (in a council, Thanet, that is Labour 26; Conservative 22; Independent 3; Thanet Independent 2 ; UKIP 2; and 1 Non affiliated Councillor). And yet on the door step this ward expresses much more of a Labour versus ukip tone. As with many other door-knocks this campaign we find some dedicated voters and quite a number who are as yet undecided, and for whom a decent five, ten or even fifteen minute conversation is a minimum requirement for their engagement with what Labour can offer them, their community and the UK.
A good morning’s work and back to ‘The Red Hall’ for a cuppa and a bite to eat, where their ‘charity’ bookshelves has Tawney on offer, and an interesting Soviet take on Shakespeare!
Then heading out again to cover more ground. Thankfully the sun is starting to emerge and take away the morning’s chill. Sadly the weather might have warmed up, but the politics has been polluted by intimidation and abuse as comrades on another canvas are set upon by far-right agitators. Thankfully Will gets prompt support for his condemnation of the attack from tory candidate, and no-one is hurt. And of course that isn’t going to put us off, and every team goes out for a third door-knock before evening sets in.
This seat is a bit like the wider election – too close to call; Some of our opponents will get nasty, if not nastier. So we have to be stronger, work harder and keep talking to the British people about the future they want, a future free of intimidation, bullying and hate, a future of hope.
Hywel Lloyd is a Co-founder of Labour: Coast & Country
The views expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily represent the views of, and should not be attributed to, the Labour: Coast & Country