Press Releases 2015 Election
Friday 17th April 2015
QUEEN’S BRIAN MAY TO VISIT TORQUAY TODAY IN SUPPORT OF PARLIAMENTARY CANDIDATE ADRIAN SANDERS
Queen guitarist and Common Decency campaigner Brian May makes a second visit in the South West today in support of local Parliamentary candidates.
After his visit this afternoon, Friday April 17, to Penzance to show support for the Parliamentary candidate for the West Cornwall and Isles of Scilly constituency of St Ives, Andrew George which will take in a Q & A with students at Penwith College, May will later in the day head for Torquay to meet up with Liberal Democrat Parliamentary candidate for the Torbay Constituency, Adrian Sanders.
The meeting takes place at 5.00pm at The Pavilion Theatre, next to Torquay Marina, Vaughan Parade, Torquay, TQ2 5EQ. Brian and Adrian will meet outside for a photo call and any opportunity for media interviews.
The Pavilion is a former concert venue, akin to Paignton's Festival Theatre where Brian played with Queen on their 1974 tour. The Pavilion is currently closed and quickly falling into a state of disrepair. It is in dire need of work so that it can be re-opened once again as a landmark on Torquay's seafront with perhaps a possible future as a centre for concerts as it has been in the past. The Festival Theatre has since been converted into a multi-screen cinema and bears no resemblance to what it once was.
After their meeting at the Pavilion, Adrian and Brian will leave around 5.30pm and travel to the Woodend Project in Watcombe. The Project, run by dedicated volunteers, has seen the rescue of local woodland and wildlife, including two Badger setts and a family of foxes. The area is now flourishing with more wildlife as well as allotments and play areas. The land has been leased by the community to protect the local wildlife and create amenities for residents.
The Woodend Project is located on a former Council housing estate, near 60 Mincent Hill, Torquay, TQ2 8DE
For further information:
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( 1 ) For further information contact Adrian Sanders’ press contact Laurence Aitchison. Mobile: 07729 322274
(2) Contact Nigel Palmer for Common Decency on 01344 625800
(3) For more on Common Decency go to: www.commondecency.org.uk
BRIGHTON: Monday 13th April
Common Decency politics: Rock legend Brian May in Brighton with Caroline Lucas Queen Guitarist calls for Commons reform – end reign of Party Whips and forced votes Backs Caroline for Pavilion: vote for MPs who put constituents and conscience first.
ROCK LEGEND and prominent campaigner Brian May visits Brighton today to talk Common Decency – and music.The Queen guitarist launched his Common Decency campaign last month, which aims to drive forward real democracy, through political and social change – toward a more compassionate Britain.The campaign wants to see a Parliament that can truly and transparently serve the public - ending the power of Party Whips and vested interests of privileged politics, and defined instead by MPs who serve their constituents and conscience first.Brian says of Caroline: “She is exactly what you would hope an MP to be. She’s honest, truthful, always in pursuit of fairness, never motivated by self-interest. She’s a wonderful MP. We need more like her.”Of the Common Decency campaign, he says: “It is the time for people to reclaim democracy. Common Decency is colour blind; its view of candidates is not determined by which political party he or she belongs to, but by the qualities of the person. What we are saying is: Let’s elect the individuals who we believe will act decently, transparently, and accountably once they sit in Parliament.”Brian and Caroline will be stopping by the city’s seafront - *Details of press call below* - before heading to the Brighton Music College (BIMM) for a tour and informal Q&A with students. They will then visit the University of Sussex for an event supporting unsigned musicians, where Brian will also participate in a Q&A and a drive to encourage young people to register to vote.
Queen backs National Health Action Party
Two members of rock legend Queen have independently given their backing to candidates from the National Health Action Party standing at the general election.
Queen guitarist Brian May has endorsed the National Health Action Party's Dr Louise Irvine as part of his Common Decency campaign - as she attempts to oust the Health Secretary from South West Surrey. And Queen drummer Roger Taylor is supporting Rik Evans, the NHA Party's candidate in Truro & Falmouth who is building up considerable support in the constituency. Their pledges of support came totally independently, and neither member of Queen knew before about the other's backing for the NHA Party.
Brian May said: "Louise Irvine comes from a passionate position of objecting to what this government has done to hospitals and to the NHS. She's had first-hand experience of it as a GP in Lewisham. She is not only a committed defender of the NHS but she will also be the kind of MP we need more of in parliament - independent of the party whip or outside conflicts of interest, someone who will really listen to and represent her constituents."
Dr Irvine, who as chair of the Save Lewisham Hospital Campaign, has twice beaten the Health Secretary in the courts over his attempt to downgrade the hospital said:
"I feel very honoured to be among a group of people being endorsed by Brian May as espousing his principles of decency, transparency and accountability. The idea behind Common Decency that we need independent-minded MPs to “serve their constituents and moral conscience first” fits exactly with my own ethos and that of the NHA Party. We reject the whole notion of the party whips system which puts parties above people. We also need an end to the conflicts of interest that see MPs profiting from outside interests while in Parliament and profiting from their political connections when they leave Parliament.
I'm also delighted that Brian feels as strongly as we do in the National Health Action Party about the need to restore and protect the NHS as a publicly-funded and publicly-delivered system, and strongly oppose its privatisation. The way this government is under funding and privatising our NHS makes it the vital the Tories are ousted at the general election. The people of South West Surrey have a unique opportunity to vote out the Health Secretary who bears ultimate responsibility for the drive to run down and sell off our NHS."
Queen drummer Roger Taylor has given his backing to the NHA Party's Rik Evans standing in Truro & Falmouth. Taylor said:
"Rik and I have been friends for nearly fifty years and I know that his campaigning against privatisation of our NHS is passionate and heartfelt. I fully support Rik’s endeavour to keep the NHS as a publicly funded service for us all, free at the point of use, with the profit motive removed. I wish Rik well.”
Rik Evans, a local businessman who resigned as vice chair of the Royal Cornwall Hospital Trust over privatisation, said:
“Roger has been a good and loyal friend for most of my life and his endorsement of my campaign against privatisation of health means a lot. Our friendship started about 47 years ago when I hired Roger’s band “The Reaction” to play in a wedding marquee I had erected in Feock near Truro. I have watched Roger’s huge success in the rock music business with pride and admiration and it is always a joy when we get together over a bottle of wine.”
Dr Louise Irvine and Rik Evans are among 13 candidates being fielded at the general election by the National Health Action Party. Details here: www.nhap.org/nha-party-election-campaign-launch-leader-urges-public-vote-not-just-nhs-sort-society-want-live/
Brian May endorsing Dr Louise Irvine on BBC Surrey: www.nhap.org/brian-may-voices-his-support-for-nha-candidate-dr-louise-irvine/
For more information on Common Decency go to: www.commondecency.org.uk
Under Strict Embargo – Not for publication before 10.00am Tuesday March 24, 2015
Brian May and Save Me Trust launch Common Decency campaign calling for a fairer UK for all.
London, Tuesday March 24, 2015 - Queen guitarist and recognised countryside campaigner, Brian May, with his Save Me Trust, today officially announced the launch of the Common Decency campaign. Full details of the campaign are made public on the Common Decency website: www.commondecency.org.uk
The Common Decency campaign is geared by May’s determination to drive political and social change towards a more compassionate Britain. He calls for radical political reform in the UK, an end to privilege, and the establishment of a true democracy in which the people have an effective voice.
Says May: “In the 2010 election almost 38% of the electorate, over 18 million people, did not bother to vote, with the consequence that no one party gathered enough votes to form a government. Behind closed doors, deals were done that saddled us with a post-election coalition nobody voted for. In the ensuing bleak five years, this Government, like many before it, has steadfastly resisted every effort to bring about reform, protect those who have no voice, and make Britain a place of equal opportunity. The electorate has come to believe that no one is listening, and therefore their votes are meaningless. The whole system needs to be torn apart and rebuilt. It is the time for people to reclaim democracy.
“Our banner is Common Decency. Common Decency is not another political party. Common Decency is colour blind; its view of candidates is not determined by which political party he or she belongs to, but by the qualities of the person. What we are saying is: Let’s elect the individuals who we believe will act decently, transparently, and accountably once they sit in Parliament.”
May centres his campaign on efforts to make people understand the power for change is within them. “On May 7th, we vote for a new Parliament. After five years of powerlessness, we all have just 15 hours of democracy. Just this once, we can seize the opportunity to change the system. If we all get up off our ‘asses’ we can vote OUT the fat cats, once and for all.
“In this circumstance, NO VOTE IS WASTED – NO SEAT IS SAFE !”
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“After the 7th May, there will be no redress, no opportunity to withdraw our votes and change our mind: the decision we make right now will have a direct impact on our lives until 2020. However, any vote that erodes the current stranglehold of both Cameron’s elitist gang and the outdated two-party system as a whole increases our chances of having a real say in the next Parliament. Getting rid of the present Government is a necessary, but not a sufficient, condition for achieving a fair, compassionate Britain.”
Key points contained in May’s Common Decency campaign proposals, which can be read in full at: www.commondecency.org.uk are:
We believe Britain is in a desperate state, our democracy having effectively broken down. Our country has probably never, ever, been so riddled with unfairness and inequality, and this is no accident.
The privileged hereditary rich ARE getting richer, and the poor getting poorer. We now have an electorate that is apathetic, because people are faced with meaningless choices, none of which give any possibility of optimism. We are in the vice-like grip of an elite group that has the money, power, and connections to get elected and STAY elected. Vested interests determine how Parliamentary votes are cast, justice is more than ever out of reach of the common man, and Law and Order in the Countryside has broken down. Politicians routinely lie, inside and outside the Houses of Parliament, and are not brought to account. For democracy to work, its people must be informed truthfully. How can democracy work when we are being constantly lied to? We believe it’s time for the people to reclaim democracy. And the driving force must not be self-interest, greed, or career moves. True democracy must be based on morality, compassion and honesty. Our banner is COMMON DECENCY. Common Decency wants a fair deal and a voice for every sentient creature in the land.
We want nothing less than a complete reform of the Parliamentary system. It’s about not just removing the unfairness and injustice that the present Government represents, but removing the corrupt system that spawned it and all recent Governments. And it’s about radically changing the composition of Parliament – moving it forward, consigning the failed two-party system to history. Did you know that the Whips in the major parties in Parliament regularly force MPs to vote, not on their own moral principles, or according to the will of their constituents, but according to the Party Line? In any issue deemed of high importance to the Party's future, MPs are not allowed to vote for what they feel is right. They are routinely threatened with the withdrawal of privileges, and manipulated by 'carrots' of opportunities for promotion within the Party. We believe that Democracy is castrated right there. We want to abolish the Whip system. We want to see a Parliament that is no longer dominated by two or three major parties, so they can no longer force issues against the will of us, the people.
Our dream is to produce a result at the next election which will effectively bring in a multi-party system instead – in fact a House of Commons filled with individuals, who, regardless of their political affiliations, regardless of their ‘colour’ (political affiliation) will serve their constituents and their moral conscience first, and their own self-interest and future political ‘career’ last. We believe that if these aims are achieved, it will no longer be possible for politicians to gang up and bully us all into wars we don’t want to fight, pointless animal slaughter we don’t approve of, the underhanded privatisation of the National Health Service for profit, and the signing of treaties like TTIP which will disempower our country, enabling international companies to override the democratic will of our people.
How will we do it?
We will ask people to be COLOUR BLIND as they vote in the polling booths at the coming election. We will ask them to vote for an individual who they believe will act decently, and transparently, and accountably in their interests, if they are elected. We will ask them to disregard the party lines, and vote tactically to oust candidates who have been shoehorned into a constituency by a major party to sit in Parliament and vote according to how their leader tells them to vote.
We will work, seat by seat, completely openly, to encourage decent prospective MPs to do deals in order to force out the career politicians, the party-liners. We will, as Common Decency, support prospective MPs from ALL parties if we are sure they will adhere to the principles of Common Decency. We’ll do it by publicity, personal endorsement and by helping the funding of their campaigns, which otherwise would be dwarfed by the massive reserves of cash available to the major parties. Surely elections should not be determined by how much publicity money can be thrown behind a candidate? This is another reform we would like to make – remove the ability of the Rich to unfairly influence the outcome of an election. Perhaps this could be done by banning donors and, instead, funding election campaigns from a public fund. And we will do it by at last giving a reason to vote for all those who at present do not feel their vote will count for anything.
It will not be perfect; but it can be a whole different universe from what happened at the last election. We believe our plan, as it evolves, can change Britain for the better, and give us all a voice in the way Britain is run.
We are not a political party, and we are not a religion. We will not be asking you to pay up to join us. On the contrary, what we will be doing in the main is listening to you.
Pillars of Common Decency
We want to know what YOUR definitions of Common Decency are, so we can build a body of decent people that is truly united in its dreams. We have said that Common Decency is a seed, planted in the hope that it will grow into a massive tree which will stand at the centre of a new, more Compassionate Society, in which decisions are made on the basis of morals rather than self-interest.
We want to offer what we believe nobody else is offering: HOPE. So please sign up if you feel our aims are close to yours, and, in the short time available before this coming May, let’s get started.
We WILL need help in spreading the word, in leafleting, in analysing the possibilities in each constituency, and above all, motivating those, especially the young, who until now have not thought it worthwhile to cast a vote. We want the biggest turnout ever to overturn the status quo and give us back our democracy.
We believe that there are some broad Pillars of Common Decency that could provide us all with a starting point:
- An end to the Whip system
- Dismantling of Privilege
- Proportional Representation
- Zero tolerance for cruelty to animals, just as to children
- Restoration of the National Health Service
- An end to the policy of Austerity
- Public ownership of the Banks
- No Declaration of War
- Land Reform
How people can get involved:
- Be an advocate of Common Decency, committing to our shared core beliefs - the Pillars of Common Decency, as they evolve
- Do some basic research on what is happening in your own constituency
- Check out our constituency pages under MPs in the menu on the website
- Who might the "interesting" candidates be?
- Which are worth approaching?
- Would they sign up to Common Decency?
- The closing date for candidates wishing to stand is the 9th April 2015 so please keep us informed of your constituency and any updates, by checking your constituency page here regularly
- We need your views and opinions, so please keep us informed by using the comment boxes on each article at www.commondecency.org.uk
Facebook page www.facebook.com/pages/Common-Decency/1577094359170378
Twitter feed www.twitter.com/DecencyCommon
For more information please contact:
For Save Me Trust / Common Decency
CEO, Save Me Trust / Common Decency
Tel: 01344 625800
For Brian May
PR Contact PR
Matthew Christian / Neil Reading
Neil Reading PR
020 7839 2277