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preamble to constitution

The Liberal Democrats are different - we are a Party that seeks to empower ever person and every community to have a voice and be the best it can be - incuding right here in Braintree and Witham.

Find out the latest news below, or click on the links to the right to learn more about what we're doing in your area.

Even better, join us today, and we will support you to make the changes you want to see in your community.

Latest News & Events

  • Tim Farron and Nick Clegg
    Article: Jul 27, 2016

    Liberal Democrat European Union spokesperson and former Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg has launched the first briefing paper of his Brexit Challenge project, which analyses the options facing the Government if it intends for Britain to retain significant access to the Single Market.



    While Single Market access is essential to the British economy, and retaining access remains the best of a series of bad options for the economy post-Brexit, it comes with significant challenges and trade-offs. The analysis shows that even if the Government were able to achieve concessions on freedom of movement, seeking to retain significant access to the Single Market would still mean adherence to its rules and regulations, while not having any control or influence over them. It also concludes that the biggest benefit of Single Market access is the removal of non-tariff barriers, such as shared rules and harmonised standards, as opposed to tariffs.

  • Suzanne Fletcher, Chair of Liberal Democrats for Seekers of Sanctuary (LD4SOS)
    Article: Jul 22, 2016

    The Liberal Democrats have slammed the Government for slipping out an announcement that Cedars pre-departure accommodation is to close.



    It raises the prospect of children once again being held in immigration detention centres - a practice ended by the Liberal Democrats in Government.



    Liberal Democrats in Coalition established the centre to end the detention of children, and the Conservatives have used the final day of the Parliamentary session to reverse the move.



    Prior to 2010, thousands of children were being detained in prison-like conditions. During Labour's last 5 years in government, over 7,000 innocent children were held in adult detention centres, sometimes for weeks and months at a time.



    The establishment of the centre was driven by Sarah Teather and Nick Clegg and following the news of its closure the Liberal Democrat Seekers for Sanctuary have set out 10 questions the government must answer.



    Aside from scrapping the centre the Conservatives have failed to offer any assurances on what will replace it, the emotional support that vulnerable children will be given or any preparations that will be made for them ahead of their return to a country that many of them may not even remember.



    Liberal Democrat Home Affairs Spokesman Alistair Carmichael said:



    "Ending the detention of children for immigration purposes was one of the first priorities of Liberal Democrats in government. It is the mark of our society how we treat the most vulnerable and it is disgusting that the Conservatives are now rolling back such an important measure.



    "It is outrageous they slipped out this announcement on the last day of Parliamentary business, and they must now set out what exactly is going to happen to children in the future. We cannot have a return to the days of children being locked up in immigration detention centres, as happened under Labour. The Government has a lot of questions that remained unanswered."



    Chair of Liberal Democrat Seekers for Sanctuary, Suzanne Fletcher, who has visited Cedars, and been part of an Independent Monitoring Board until the change of Government last year said:



    "Cedars provided an oasis of care and calm at a very traumatic time for those families with children who very sadly were being sent against their will back to their country of origin. , and our Government should be ashamed of such a backward step."

  • A pair of wedding rings (Jeff Belmonte. Licensed as Creative Commons Attribution 2.0.)
    Article: Jul 22, 2016

    The Liberal Democrats have branded the Conservative's Flagship Married Couples Tax Allowance policy a 'pathetic failure' after figures revealed that only a fraction of eligible couples had bothered claiming the allowance.

    Only 330,000 people have taken advantage of the allowance, equivalent to 8% of those eligible.

  • Child in prison cell mental health
    Article: Jul 21, 2016

    Alistair Carmichael has demanded the government rule out the prospect of children being kept in prison cells.

    This follows the government slipping out an announcement of the closure of the Cedars facility, which supports families who are being returned overseas by the Home Office. Ending child detention was a major Liberal Democrat achievement in the coalition government. The facilities were described as "exceptional" and their closure has also been attacked by Barnardo's.

  • Nick Clegg (The Guardian)
    Article: Jul 20, 2016

    Former Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg has returned to the Liberal Democrat front bench as the party's European Union spokesperson in order to hold the Government to account over its plans for Brexit.

    Nick Clegg is uniquely well placed to challenge the Conservatives on their plans for Brexit. Not only did he sit around the cabinet table with Theresa May, Liam Fox and others, he was also a leading Member of the European Parliament and a trade negotiator in the European Commission under Leon Brittan. During the coalition years he established himself as the highest profile pro-European voice in British politics and is well known and respected in capitals across the continent.

  • Knella Road Flooding
    Article: Jul 18, 2016
    By Jude Deakin

    Many of our local roads and pathways have suffered due to the unseasonal amount of rainfall, especially in June. Many residents were getting drenched with spray by passing vehicles that had no alternative but to drive through the ponds of water, many extending across the whole road, particularly on our housing estates.

  • Article: Jul 12, 2016

    Following Andrea Leadsom's withdrawal from the Conservative leadership race Liberal Democrat leader Tim Farron has called for an early General Election.

    A coronation of Theresa May as Prime Minister carries no mandate.

    Tim Farron, Liberal Democrat leader said:

    "Just 13 months after the last election the Conservatives have plunged the UK into chaos. It is simply inconceivable that Theresa May should be crowned Prime Minister without even having won an election in her own party, let alone the country.

  • Article: Jul 11, 2016

    Liberal Democrat leader Tim Farron has written to 7 Prime Ministers in fellow liberal sister parties throughout Europe, including the influential Mark Rutte of the Netherlands, asking for their support for a proposal to allow UK expats to reside freely in Europe even with Brexit.

    Tim was the first party leader to call for the UK Government to agree that EU nationals be able to remain in the UK after the referendum. Politicians from across the political spectrum bar Home Office Ministers seem to agree with this and they have been savaged by MP's.

    Next Tuesday, Liberal Democrat Foreign Affairs spokesperson Tom Brake is proposing a bill to offer protections to EU citizens.

    The Liberal Democrats have now called for foreign governments to do the same for UK expats living abroad.

    Tim is also calling for the EU governments to not even look at plans to hike taxes on Brits with property or businesses abroad as a 'revenge' for Brexit.

    The top destinations for British expats in the European Union are Spain (host to 319,000), Ireland (249,000) and France (171,000)

  • Tim Farron in Whitehall
    Article: Jul 6, 2016

    "Far from being Bush's passenger, Blair was his co-pilot in taking this catastrophic decision which has destabilised Iraq, provided the hotbed for Daesh and tarnished Britain's reputation around the word."

    "Daesh has arisen from the complete absence of any post conflict planning by the government.

    "Charles Kennedy's judgement has been vindicated in every respect. I hope those in the Labour and Conservative parties who were so forceful in their criticism of him and the Liberal Democrats at the time are equally forceful in their acknowledgements today that he was right. An absence of scrutiny by the Conservative party opened the door for Blair and the Labour Government to pursue a counter-strategic, ill-resourced campaign.

  • Article: Jul 5, 2016

    The Liberal Democrats have called on the UK government to introduce a new Act to tackle poor air quality and ensure vital pollution limits are not watered down post-Brexit.

    Today marks the 60th anniversary of the Clean Air Act, which was introduced in the 1950s to tackle deadly smog affecting UK cities.