We had a great party last night in Zeera’s restuarant under the Green Bridge in Mile End. Ed Balls didn’t just “arrive” at the fundraiser; he likes to “burst” into the room with lots of noise and handshaking. The first thing that strikes you about him is how much he loves people. The second thing you notice is how much he loves being the centre of attention.
But the star of the show was Cllr Rachael Saunders. It was the 2nd time she’d had Ed visit her Mile End East ward in the last year. Out of envy, we spread a rumour that he attended less through her strong contacts and more because other CLPs don’t phone his office with invites. He he he.
The local members were already tucking into the food by the time Ed had come. New comers soon found themselves getting to know the regulars. One of the good things about being a Labour member in Tower Hamlets is that the Bangladeshis make such good food.
Ed Balls staffer, Balshan Izzet, got straight into the spirit meeting the party members.
As it was her party, Cllr Saunders made the first speech and pointed out that Mile End East is now the only ward in Poplar & Limehouse constituency that has three Labour councillors. So at least we knew that we were eating in a 100% Labour ward.
Jim Fitzpatrick was next. He told us about the sheer excitement in the Parliamentary Labour Party when news spread that Ed Balls was to become shadow chancellor.
Then it was Ed’s turns to speak. There’s nothing more tedious than bloggers relaying people’s anecdotes, so that they can’t use them again. So I’m not going to repeat them here. Let’s just say he was very funny and you’ll have to get him along to your own party if you want to hear him yourself.
I’ve got no idea what bit of the speech this snap came from, but it’s a fun pic.
Following Ed’s speech, our newly elected Campaigns Officer, James King, told us where the battles will be. He’s not a bad public speaker, James. He opened by thanking Ed Balls “for doing such a good job of warming up the audience for me“.
We all agreed it was a good night out and we raised £470 for campaigning, as well as having a good brain storming for ideas and skills from local members.
The rest of the photos are on my Flickr site.