Stroud Literary Festival

Stroud Literary Festival began four years ago and this years was bigger and better than ever. Over 250 people came to my Friday night session at the council owned Subscription Rooms including my lovely daughter Emma who lives in Stroud.
To my right in the photo is Paul McLaughlin, the festival director who was an astute and funny interviewer. On my left is David Drew, the local (Labour) MP who introduced me. David is one of my favourite former colleagues and one of the finest constituency MPs that it’s been my pleasure to work with.
Stroud had always been a Conservative seat apart from for a few years after WW2. David won it in the 1997 Labour landslide and held it for 13 years. Even his considerable personal vote couldn’t stop the Tories winning it back in 2010 only for David to make a triumphant return at the last election.
His presence helped make the Stroud event a truly memorable occasion.
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