Wednesday, August 11, 2010

EXCLUSIVE: Good Times in Rochdale, Gillian Duffy Rides Again

Readers will remember how the town of Rochdale became the centre of the General Election campaign as, against local advice, Gordon Brown went walkabout in one of the area's least Labour-friendly council wards. Luckily it was a lifetime Labour supporter Mrs Gillian Duffy, out by chance fetching home a loaf of bread, who stopped him for a chat.

Not so bad. Bit touch and go with her concerns about Eastern European workers. But then of course Sky Employee of the Month (Name Withheld) left Gordon's bug microphone on his lapel .. and the rest could have been history for the party locally.

But a funny thing then happened in Rochdale. Members of minorities were chuffed that Gordon was so clearly batting for them. Already cocky Lib Dems thought they could bank Rochdale and moved on to attack Phil Woolas in Oldham and Saddleworth. And the likes of Mrs Duffy forgave the man his careless talk.

Rochdale was torn from the grip of Paul Rowen (some LOL archive), a member who had foolishly cut up rough instead of lightening up when a banana purchase in his allowances was highlighted and lampooned. Simon Danczuk won the day. Paul Rowen was discarded by his people, and will be soon enough by his party too. Will he get another run at parliament? We doubt it somehow. Sir Cyril Smith MBE must have a god child or the like to endow on the seat? Though even he is toast these days.

Mrs Duffy has already let bygones be bygones and come out to endorse young David Milliband for the Labour Leadership contest. And today (Wednesday 11 August, 5:30pm) she will also be the guest of honour at the grand opening of Mr Danczuk's new office in the Town Centre.

That's St Mary's Gate. No truth in the rumour that renaming to St Gillian's Gate, or indeed Duffy Gate is on the cards. Simon Danczuk MP is making a good fist of keeping the people of Rochdale informed on his website. The big media will be there. Something Rowen never really managed in his five year rule of fool. But this is a LOL exclusive.


Anonymous said...

And here's another LOL exclusive, Chris. Gillian Duffy joined the Labour Party tonight.

Simon's new office was absolutely packed and she was given a really warm welcome.

Anonymous said...

PA reports that Gillian Duffy was in a forgiving mood. Their reports says:

The 66-year-old said: "I never wanted to hurt the Labour Party at all. I wanted them to get in at the last election.

"I felt very sorry for Gordon Brown, because he had everything to lose. He's been in politics a very, very long time, it's his life."

Paul T Horgan, England said...

The main feature of the Labour leadership election is that the male candidates appear indistinguishable from each other in so many ways.

So, given the above, a mixture of any two of the candidates would suffice to lead the party.

But what kind of mixture?

Using the latest morphing technologies, I have determined that the best candidate would be 80% David Miliband with 20% Ed Balls.

Want to see how?

Watch the video of the candidates morphing seamlessly into each other here.