Tuesday, 25 September 2007


What is it with Neil Kinnock and beaches on the south coast of England?

It's many years since the former Labour leader memorably stumbled into the surf on Brighton beach. Today comes news of an intriguing clash with semi-naked protesters on Bournemouth's seafront.

The protesters were highlighting the Government's refusal to offer them full compensation for pensions they lost when their companies went bust.

Lord Kinnock arrived on the scene and was greeted by protester John Benson who called him
a "bloody traitor", a "bloody disgrace" and told him to "bugger off".

The former Labour leader said he had come to the protest to find the "guy who has been telling lies about me".

Despite the hostile reception Lord Kinnock sympathised with the protesters:

"They're very decent people and they're making a point... They've got a case they've been dreadfully let down by the system. The government has sought to provide some support and is
following it through still."

He may be pleased to learn that I think next year's Labour conference is in Manchester, which doesn't have a beach.

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