Monday, March 2, 2009


Wilstead is a small Bedfordshire village (population 2,300) but it has a splendid Football Club with several adult and youth teams, ably led by the Chairman James Struthers and Chief Coach Ben Wisson. Recently I gave the Club a grant from my County Community Leaders' Fund to refurbish their showers and on Saturday I watched them play a home match against Renhold. They scored 2 goals but Renhold scored 4 so Wilstead lost the match but there was lots of action.

My home town is Portsmouth and my 2 brothers once dragged me to watch Pompey play a match at Fratton Park when I was a teenager. I was bored stiff because no goals were scored until the 89th minute and swore I would never go again. Apart from watching World Cup football on TV I have never watched another football match since until Saturday but it was fun - I just blocked my ears to the occasional four letter words!

I drove 160 miles south down the M1 from Leeds for the match as I was at the CCA (Conservative Councillors' Association) Annual Conference, at which David Cameron was due to speak. David could not attend as he is in mourning for his 6 year old disabled son Ivan who died on Wednesday. David and Samantha Cameron have been devastated by the sudden loss of their eldest child and his funeral takes place tomorrow in Oxfordshire

Alan Duncan gave a keynote speech instead of David Cameron and we had a feisty after dinner speech from Baroness Warsi, the youngest and sole female Moslem peer in the House of Lords who described her relentless battles against discrimination and prejudice, especially from within her own Moslem community in Dewsbury, Yorkshire.

Thank you to Cathy Burridge, from Texas, USA who sent me the following kind comment:

"I have just visited your lovely town and was delighted to have also visited Elstow, what a beautiful place you live in!

It was a whistlestop tour of the City of Bedford, but it was such a shame I did not get to meet a local celebrity as yourself.

Thanks for this blog. Its very informative, it looks like you too travel a lot, have you been to Cambridge, its fantastic?

Oh, I so agree with you, your country needs more trees, so I hope you will be planting some more soon. Best wishes Councillor Lynne"

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