Wednesday, April 06, 2005

Well, we’re off!

This weekend has been a really busy one with last minute peacetime canvassing – I was in Lower Hellesdon (part of Wensum Ward) on Saturday afternoon and met a group of residents to talk about the junction of Hellesden Mill Lane and Hellesden Road that is causing real problems. Earlier that morning I had a rather pleasant time around the City in the sunshine! We canvassed around the St. Giles area of the City and I met a UKIP convert to the Conservatives. There really is a sea change of opinion, especially towards the LibDems. The more people talk of their policies such as not jailing burglars, raising taxes or joining the Euro, the more support they seem to lose. Funny that!

Sunday we went to an NCT (National Childbirth Trust) lunch at Pizza Express at the forum – real baby overload! I feel sorry for the other diners actually – but all the babes were really well behaved and a minimum of crying! After that it was out delivering my “Being Local Matters” leaflet to Thorpe Hamlet.

Monday was a surprising day, a lot of mixed emotions about the Pope’s death and a time for reflection really.

Then, of course, the worst kept secret in Westminster was today’s announcement of a 5th May poll. This morning we were in Norwich for the launch of our Eastern Region Campaign, led by Transport Spokesman Tim Yeo – himself a Suffolk MP. It was a great event and did a few media interviews. From there it was off to start the delivery of my first leaflet! We had literally dozens of people across Norwich out delivering today – covering I am pleased to say areas in every single ward in the City.

I wanted to start to campaign on the doorsteps, which is exactly what I did, canvassing two large areas of Nelson and then University Ward. People were really shocked to see me so early on in the campaign – ah, I said, the advantage of living in the City! One lady couldn’t believe her eyes having just watched the announcement on the lunchtime news only to find me on the doorstep moments later!

Leafleting next - I was out first in Town Close, with our county candidate John Wyatt, then off to Nelson Ward to almost die of a heart attack leafleting a surprisingly hilly area (who said Norfolk was flat?!?). This evening we were joined by ACD Kate Fuller too, who leaflets faster than anybody I have ever seen! The woman is like Linford Christie!

This evening I managed to watch Hustle, send out 500 e-mails to voters announcing my candidature and update our Norwich South website to the Antony Little Campaign Website.

The people I met on the streets today were all really friendly – the running score was five positive comments, two thumbs-up-from-passing motorists and a “go on my son” shouted from a passing truck versus one rude comment shouted down a street. Not doing badly!

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