Monday, March 20, 2006

The Tawney Lecture and Other Events

As I mentioned earlier, on Saturday I went to the annual Tawney lecture, hosted by the Christian Socialist Movement, followed by their AGM.
Kerron has already mentioned this on his blog and touched on the Peace March going on outside, although, as always, the Socialist Workers Party seemed to hijack the event and cause a bit of trouble. When I arrived at Westminster Tube Station (The CSM holding the meeting at Westminster Central Hall, where they are based), the police were already pointing out to one group that they didn't ask for permission to have a stall directly outside the main tube entrance. On their little table were placards calling Blair a terrorist., which struck me as somewhat confrontational.

Anyway, back to the lecture. This years' speaker was Graham Dale,who is a former Driector of CSM. He spoke on the history of Christian contribution to the Labour Party. That many of the 29 Labour MP's in 1906 were nonconformists and helped influence the direction of the Labour Party. Among those he mentioned were Keir Hardie, Margaret Bondfield, and Arthur Henderson. He also mentioned what we should be doing as the CSM today, in working with the Labour Party and indeed with other faiths affiliated with the Party.
Then it was lunch, a buffet at the stop of the stairs in the entrance area, where there resides a lifesize statue of John Wesley (who was only about five foot tall) and a chance to meet up with some familiar faces, before getting down to the AGM, where we debated our constitution in a document entitled 'Salt and Light', and made some key changes.

AGM over, I made my way to Starbucks in Victoria Street, so that I could have a coffee and a chance to go over The Guardian, before I checked my e-mails etc.. and had a look around Westminster and Covent Garden and took some photos.

St James's Park at sunset.

Horseguard's parade

Incidentally I noticed that a favourite bookshop of mine, next to Covent Garden tube station, has closed :(.

I used to frequent there some years ago when I had a temp job with Oxfam in Drury Lane.
Ah well, life moves on.


the dĂșnadan said...

Hi Paul,

I wonder if we just missed each other! I was in Trafagar Square on Saturday too. Not for the peace march (how come when I said to my friend as volubly as I could that I loved George Bush, that I wanted a sticker saying '*in* my name' and that I thought Palestine should not be free everyone ignored me?! Not fair!) but for the Americans in Paris and William Shakespeare exhibitions at the National Gallery and National Portrait Gallery, respectively. Both were excellent and well worth coming into town for.


Paul Burgin said...

Your friend probably thought it was a bad joke ;)
And, yeah, I probably did miss you!