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Dear Labour Party

May 10, 2015

Once again you are in need of a party leader.

I’ve had a look at the current field and I’m sorry to say, boys and girls, you are a remarkably uninspiring lot. (So, in reality, not remarkable at all.) The only one on the BBC list that I would have given you tuppence for was Alan Johnston, who’s already eliminated himself from the race. As for the notion of a Labour leader named Tristram, you have to know the best he’d ever be is a punchline. (Sorry, Tris, not your fault, blame your parents for stymieing your ambitions.)

I think I can help. As it happens, I’m freelancing at the moment and wouldn’t mind a regular income, so, even though it’s a thankless job, I’m willing to put my name forward for the role of Labour leader.

Who the hell am I, you ask? It’s a fair question. Summed up, as I am on my website: writer, thinker, smoker, drinker. I also swear on a regular basis. Writer might not seem an obvious qualification (although Vaclav Havel did okay), possibly not even thinker. However, freely admitting to smoking, drinking and swearing does make me more immediately recognisable to the electorate as a real person than any of the other contenders.

This, of course, is where you’ve been going wrong since the tragic, untimely death of John Smith 21 years ago. With the exception of Gordon Brown, who occasionally seemed like he might be a real person, the smarmy stamp of Tony Blair continues to contaminate the “New” Labour brand.

There are other ways in which I can be spotted as a real person.


 Unlike Blair – and many of his minions – I did not attend Oxford (or Cambridge).


(Seriously, if you’re poor and being lectured about bad lifestyle choices by some silver-spooned Oxbridge git, why not go for a real Tory, rather than Tory-lite?)

I once worked (for Greenpeace) in Islington, but I’ve never lived there.

I do not have a home in London and a country estate. (In fact, I do not have a home in the UK at all at the moment, but we’ll get to that.)

Unlike Blair – and many of his minions – I’ve actually been a member of a trade union (NUJ). And I actually like trade unions.

I could go on, but I’m sure you get my drift. The Labour Party needs a real person as its next leader. Someone with whom voters could imagine having a pint (and a fag). Someone whose roots are in an east London council house, not the House of Lords. Someone who actually gives a shit about people.

That would be me.

Over the coming days I will be revealing my priorities for the next Labour government. I invite you to review them, confident that you will quickly grasp how popular they will be with voters.

As previously mentioned, I am not currently a UK resident, but I am prepared to return in order to save the Labour Party (and the country). I can fly over any time to discuss my candidacy. I will need you to pay my fare. I know money’s tight at the moment, but I’m sure you can figure something out for the good of the party. After all, it’s not as if you’ve lost as many deposits as the LibDems.

I look forward to hearing from you.


Anne M. Holmes



From → Columns

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