27 Nov 2015

Join the Green Party on People's March for Climate, Justice and Jobs on Sunday

The Green Bloc will assemble for the march on the corner of Park Lane and Deanery Street (near the Dorchester Hotel, W1K 1QA). 11.30am Map here: http://bit.ly/1HcO5b7

26 Nov 2015

GREEN PARTY POLICY ON HOUSING – 10am to 1pm Saturday 5 December, in Camden Town Hall, Euston Road.

GREEN PARTY POLICY ON HOUSING – 10am to 1pm Saturday 5 December, in Camden Town Hall, Euston Road.
Please RSVP for this to Anne Gray amgggg2@yahoo.co.uk so we can ascertain numbers and plan workshops. If you RSVP we will send briefing notes and update on speakers next week. There is no charge though a donation on the day for future venue hire and sandwiches would be much appreciated.

10am registration and intro

10.15 to 11.15 3 main speakers and question/comments:-
Tom Chance – overview of London housing situation and Green Party policy responses

Richard Lee from Just Space – on their challenge to London Plan; problems of targets, densification and forced gentrification, loss of social rent housing

Andrea Carey-Fuller – rent control in private sector

11.15 to 12.15; workshops; participants choose between:-
1) The London Plan and how to fight extension of ‘right to buy’ as well as estate demolitions
2) Rent control in the private sector
3) Housing policies and solutions for singles and non-family groups, including GBLTQ, co-housing, youth in shared housing, supported housing for older people and those with disabilities

12.15-1; report back and wind-up; then lunch

Briefing notes will be sent out to those who RSVP.  We are also hoping to set up a Facebook page shortly - watch this space

25 Nov 2015

Vote for a positive Green voice on Brent Council in Kensal Green by-election

Brent Green Party has selected 28 year old Jafar Hassan, a strategic consultant, as its candidate for the December 17th Kensal Green by-election. Jafar has lived in Brent for 25 years.

Jafar said:
The Green Party came second to Labour in Kensal Green at the last council election so it's vital that everyone in the area goes out to the polls on 17 December to make their vote count. Brent Council needs change and I believe I'm the right person to do that. Whether in Parliament, the GLA or on London councils such as Islington, the Green Party has proved that though few in number we can make a huge difference.

Brent Council is dominated by weak Labour councillors, a divided Conservative opposition, and a single ineffectual Liberal Democrat. The Green Party can win in Kensal Green so I hope that the people here will vote for me  on 17 December.  I will hold the Council to account and put forward positive ideas to fix Brent’s lack of affordable housing, shortage of school places, poor handling of regeneration projects and the cluelessness when it comes to tackling fuel poverty and making homes energy efficient.
The Green Party beat both Liberal Democrats and Tories to come second behind Labour in the  May 2014 local elections.

17 Nov 2015

Greens warn against Paris attacks dictating policy on refugees

As Paris mourns its dead and cares for its wounded after the hideous weekend attack, the Green Party says it is important to ensure that we do not act in ways that fuel ISIS and terrorism.

Green Party leader, Natalie Bennett said:
There is a real risk that amongst the outcomes of the heinous attacks in Paris will be increased fear and division, the stirring up of Islamophobia and an impulse to retreat from the compassion and support with which Europe has so far met those fleeing ISIS in Syria and Iraq.

ISIS does not want to see that compassion, inclusion and displays of fraternity.

While sensible screening measures and checks need to be maintained; to cut off escape routes for desperate people fleeing war and persecution would only play into ISIS's hands.
We cannot let the actions of a handful of extremists dictate our response to the ongoing refugee crisis. The Green Party will resist calls to reduce Britain and Europe's access to refugees and are redoubling our calls for Britain to welcome its fair share of the refugees reaching Europe.

We also want to acknowledge and highlight the way in which so many communities around the world live with regular similar atrocities, including attacks in Beirut, Ankara, Baghdad and Kabul. And we need to note that the actions of Turkey in attacking Kurdish communities fighting ISIS within Syria have been disastrous, damaging, and deserve the strongest condemnation.
Green Party foreign affairs spokesperson, Tony Clarke said:
The killing has to stop and world leaders must find a way forward that defeats ISIS using the weapon that these terrorists fear most of all, peace talks.

There were signs over the weekend that those talks may now have some new foundation and I would encourage presidents and prime ministers to recognise that the drones cannot provide a solution and pick up the phones and find a way of halting this never ending circle of death.

16 Nov 2015

Deja vu ‘Brent Artists Resource exhibition 7/11-16/12/2016

Deja vu ‘Brent Artists Resource exhibition 7/11-16/12/2016

INVITE: Déjà Vu Exhibition Private View

A BAR Members Exhibition 2015 7/11-16/12/2016


‘Brent Artists Resource: Supporting artists since 1984’

Please Join us for the Private View of Déjà Vu. A multi-media exhibition celebrating BAR’s diverse artistic community and its exceptional 30 year history in Brent.

Brent Artists Resource (BAR) is an independent arts organisation that has been supporting local artists, by delivering high quality projects and exhibitions since 1984. BAR has a long history with Brent Council, most significantly by collaboratively running The Gallery in the old Willesden Green Library Centre for over 12 years. The Gallery was nominated one of the top community galleries in London by the BBC in 2011. Déjà Vu exhibition sees the return of BAR and its artistic community to the new library gallery for one very special show.
The exhibition features 32 BAR artists and shows a variety of art media including photography, painting, print and sculptural work.
Taking place at the Private View will be a live session of our Community First funded project We are Willesden. Working with a local photographer, visitors will have the opportunity to have their portrait professionally taken and share their thoughts and stories about Willesden.

13 Nov 2015

Muhammed Butt should stand against Modi's politics of communalism

Muhammed Butt should stand against Modi's politics of communalism

Wembley awaits Modi       Photo: Francis Henry
Guest blog by Sujata Aurora. This is also published as a letter in the current edition of the Brent and Kilburn TimesLINK

 Today Wembley Stadium will play host to Narendra Modi, the current PM of India, in an extravaganza that has been welcomed by Muhammed Butt, the leader of Brent Council.

Narendra Modi is a former worker for the RSS, a violent, fascist, Hindu supremacist group who openly admire Hitler. His party, the BJP, retains strong links with the RSS and the two are umbilically connected. Both are responsible for what has been termed a "growing mood of intolerance" towards minorities in India but as Arundhati Roy has observed, "'Intolerance' is the wrong word to use for the lynching, shooting, burning and mass murder of fellow human beings."

Modi himself is accused of personally orchestrating the Gujarat violence in 2002 during which around 2000 people, mainly Muslims, died in what has been termed a modern genocide - some of the worst communal violence India has seen. As chief minister it is thought that Modi allowed the charred bodies of 54 Hindu victims of the Godhra train fire to be paraded in the streets of Ahmedabad, directed senior police officers not to interfere if Hindus sought revenge and placed cabinet colleagues in the police control rooms to ensure compliance with his directives.

Contrary to what Modi's supporters say, Modi has not been given a "clean chit" by India's Supreme Court for his role in the violence - in fact the case has never been heard in the Supreme Court and legal action by the families of some of the victims (including three victims from Britain) is still ongoing.

That Muhammed Butt and some of his councillor colleagues think it appropriate to welcome such a person to Brent is a shameful stain on the name of what was once regarded as a tolerant borough. There is still time for them to change their minds and join the many Muslim, Hindu, Sikh and Dalit groups who stand against the politics of religious hatred and communalism, and say Narendra Modi is not welcome here.

8 Nov 2015

Take action: 2 million peope may drop off electoral register

On 1 December, if the Government gets its way, up to 2 million people will drop off the electoral register - in what will be the single biggest act of disenfranchisement in our history. This is an outrage and HOPE not hate is determined to do…

6 Nov 2015

INVITE: Déjà Vu Exhibition Private View

INVITE: Déjà Vu Exhibition Private View

A BAR Members Exhibition 2015

Private View: Thursday 12th November 6pm-9pm


‘Brent Artists Resource: Supporting artists since 1984’

Please Join us for the Private View of Déjà VuA multi-media exhibition celebrating BAR’s diverse artistic community and its exceptional 30 year history in Brent.

Brent Artists Resource (BAR) is an independent arts organisation that has been supporting local artists, by delivering high quality projects and exhibitions since 1984. BAR has a long history with Brent Council, most significantly by collaboratively running The Gallery in the old Willesden Green Library Centre for over 12 years. The Gallery was nominated one of the top community galleries in London by the BBC in 2011. Déjà Vu exhibition sees the return of BAR and its artistic community to the new library gallery for one very special show.
The exhibition features 32 BAR artists and shows a variety of art media including photography, painting, print and sculptural work.
Taking place at the Private View will be a live session of our Community First funded project We are Willesden. Working with a local photographer, visitors will have the opportunity to have their portrait professionally taken and share their thoughts and stories about Willesden.

Facebook Event 

20 Oct 2015

Climate CHANGE 29th November london Demo 12th DECEMBER 2015: A mass mobilisation in Paris

29th NOVEMBER 2015:
On this date, a huge protest will be taking place across London on the eve of the crucial Paris climate talks, which will take place from the 30th November to the 12th December.
Around the world, in major cities, people will be coming together to demand that our governments take action to save our beautiful planet. Across the UK, people will be working together to make this the biggest, most poignant demonstration yet, and our unified voice will resonate from London across the globe to call for real action on climate change.
Join us - let's show international solidarity in the fight for climate justice!
12th DECEMBER 2015:
A mass mobilisation in Paris - if our leaders fail us, we fight on. We do not accept half measures, we need a fair deal and one that takes the radical action demanded by the science.
Transport to Paris will be coordinated by UK organisations working together: watch this space.
The French Coalition Climat 21, working with international civil society has put out a call-out for international action - here is their statement below:
"The fight for a safe climate for all neither begins nor ends with the Paris climate talks. But 2015 is our best moment in years to come together to demand the world we know is within our reach: a world with an economy that works for people and the planet; a world safe from the ravages of climate change; a world with good jobs, clean air and water, healthy communities and sustainable development for all. To change everything, it takes everyone. Join us at the following mass mobilisations, and together we can bend the course of history.
On September 26th and 27th, in Paris and cities across the country, and beyond, we will mobilize to support and showcase citizen-driven initiatives to address climate change and power the energy transition.
On November 29th, we’ll take to the streets of Paris, and major cities across the world united in many voices for action on climate change. The weekend before the talks begin we’ll get ahead of the politicians to set out people’s demands for the world to know: from food, to jobs, to energy and poverty eradication.
During the two weeks of the COP, there will be more and more actions blooming, particularly in Paris.
From December 5th onwards, a big space for convergence, debates and mobilization will be open to all those who want to take part in this citizen mobilization as well as contribute to alternative solutions to climate change
On December 12th, come to Paris and join the inspiring mass mobilisation to mark the peak of two-weeks of escalating actions. Let’s come together and demonstrate the power of our movement and send a clear signal for a brighter, cleaner, safer and more just future for everyone."

19 Oct 2015

Brent and Harrow GLA Constituency nominations

Reminder that 8pm tonight (Monday October 19th) is the deadline for nominations for Green Party candidates to stand in the Brent and Harrow constituency for the London Assembly.

11 Oct 2015

Brent youth provision to be slashed and out-sourced

A cut of almost 70% in Brent Council's youth service budget (from £1,314,000 in 2015-16 to £414,394 in 2016-17) will see the service out-sourced and based mainly at Roundwood myplace Centre in Harlesden and Poplar Grove in Chalkhill. The report comments on the latter: 'The service level agreement for Poplar Grove means that it may (my emphasis) be possible for a new provider to run youth provision from the centre'.

The proposed retention of the Roundwood Centre means that there will be less money for other aspects of the youth service and the Wembley Youth Centre and Granville will no longer be funded  from April 2016.  They will be handed back to the Council's Asset Management Service and presumably sold off. The running costs of the Poplar Grove Centre will in future be met by Brent River College.

The remaining service will be 'a targeted  offer for more vulnerable groups' although the consultation indicated that young people were in favour of such provision being integrated into mainstream provision.

The Council's consultation revealed that respondents thought the Roundwood myspace Centre was under utilised. However the Centre was funded by a £5m Big Lottery grant as part of the Government's myspace programme and there are restrictions regarding future use. Closure would mean that the £5m grant or part of it could be reclaimed: 

.        Under the terms of the grant agreement, the Council is required to notify the Cabinet Office of any planned changes of use and/or ownership and could be required to repay the grant in whole or in part. Officers have now formally raised the possibility of outsourcing the centre to a third party with the Cabinet Office. They have indicated that there would be no objection to this sort of arrangement, but both the Education Funding Agency (EFA) and Cabinet Office would wish to see a lease and business plan before giving approval. They will also need confirmation that there will be continuing compliance with the existing grant agreement. Officers will therefore need to ensure that any new contractual agreements are consistent with the grant agreement and support delivery of myplace outcomes for young people.
Although the report puts a positive gloss on retaining the Roundwood Centre it is clear that the main reason for keeping it as the 'flag ship' is that it would be too expensive to close.

The consultation also revealed that some respondents felt that Brent Youth Parliament was unrepresentative of the general profile of youth in the borough.  Officers dispute this and recommend that the £64,000 annual grant to BYP continues but that its operating costs and relationship with the wider Brent population is reviewed. The BYP will lead this review of itself with the  Head of Youth service. The BYP is central to the next stage of consultation where effective communication with the young people affected is a statutory requirement. The report notes that a judgement was made against North Somerset Council's reduction in youth service because they had not consulted young people adequately or addressed the needs of young people with protected characteristics under the Equality act.

In order to judge the Council's consultation so far it is worth recording that there were more providers (59) than young people (57) at the three 'participatory commissioning sessions' and that of 119 on-line responses 64 were from young people.

A Community Asset Transfer for Roundwood is rejected as having too many risks for a future provider and the Council. and in-house provision is also rejected as capable of offering only a limited service due to funding cuts.

The report recommends that the Council puts the service out to tender with an expectation that any provider taking over would have to work with volunteers and seek additional grants: 

.        Evaluation of bids will assess potential providers’ proposals for working with the local voluntary and community sector. Providers will be required to describe what arrangements they propose in order to deliver a positive impact on the local economy and social and environmental well-being for those in Brent to support the requirements of the 2012 Act as well as the Borough Plan. Providers will also be asked to demonstrate how they will help to build the capacity of local voluntary organisations working with young people and how they will deliver services based on a thorough understanding of the diversity of services users and communities within Brent.
In future Brent secondary schools with be expected to fund the Duke of Edinburgh Award themselves and  the DOE open access centre run by the Council will close.

The report says that the Council will need to make its savings immediately and redundancy consultations with youth service staff will start in November.

Below please find the official Brent Council press release on this issue:

The Roundwood myplace Centre in Harlesden is set to remain the council's flagship youth service hub despite the authority being forced to make substantial savings, if Brent Council's Cabinet agrees on 19 October to new proposals for Council funded youth services. Youth centre provision and related youth work will be commissioned from another provider. This will help to grow the range of services for young people over time and ensure that services continue to be delivered.

This innovative new approach to youth service delivery will help the council and other partners secure other opportunities for funding sources not traditionally available to local authorities.

The borough's young people, youth service staff, voluntary and community sector providers were consulted over the summer, and they were asked how the money available for youth services should best be spent.

The Council report proposes a transformation of Brent Youth Services with the Roundwood Hub offering activities, programmes and targeted support for vulnerable young people. Cultural, sports and employment opportunities will also be offered at the centre and it will provide an important base for youth work and outreach support with a focus on working with vulnerable groups, including young people with disabilities; lesbian, gay, transgender and bisexual (LGBT) young people; and those at risk due to their behaviour. Furthermore, the Brent Youth Parliament (BYP) will continue to be run by the Council to ensure that Brent's young people are heard in decision-making that affects their lives.

A number of Youth Service projects will continue in Brent, including the Right Track Programme, which supports pupils temporarily excluded from school, and the Duke of Edinburgh Award Programme.

The Council is also looking to extend its youth services at Brent River College (Poplar Grove Youth Centre) in Wembley, but this will be subject to further discussions with a new provider.

Any new provider would be expected to work with the wider community of voluntary and community sector youth service providers to build capacity and champion youth issues in Brent, especially the newly formed Young Brent Foundation.

Councillor Ruth Moher, Lead Member for Children and Young People, said:

"Given the severe funding constraints imposed upon us by central government, this proposal will help to secure important youth services in the borough and promote more innovative ways of working with our voluntary and community sector partners. It will also help us to attract more money, which the council cannot currently access.

"We want to seize the opportunity to do something different and innovative here and create a partnership model which will help to continue youth services.

Given the scale of funding cuts from central Government, it was a distinct possibility that we may have been forced to stop all youth service provision. These Cabinet proposals will prevent that. When we spoke to young people about the future of the service, they told us that youth centre based provision and support for more vulnerable young people are important to them and would be best delivered from Roundwood which is an award-winning building in the centre of the Borough offering great services to all young people.

The London Borough of Brent needs to save £54 million by 2016/17; and estimates that from 2010 to 2018, central government funding to Brent council for vital local services will almost halve.

5 Oct 2015



ARTWORKS by P.Murry at the Queens Park Cafe, Queens Park Pavilion, Harvist Road
London NW6 6SG October 5th to November 2nd 2015.The Queen’s Park café opens at 9am and closes one hour before the park closes every day (except Christmas Day). Call 020 8969 9569 for more information.

It is difficult to tell who is participating in a CONCEALED PROCESSION because it is concealed. Artistic endeavours may enable us to discern something about the nature of some CONCEALED PROCESSIONS

Peter Murry is a relatively untrained painter, sculptor and printmaker who has exhibited with Free Painters & Sculptrs and Brent Artist's Resource., some of his writings are published in an anthology entitled "Son of The Glowing Nightsoil of the Concealed Emu" which is obtainable from him at yrrumuk@googlemail.com. His site for artwork and writings is http://quadraoptica.blogspot.co.uk/, he also works on a video blog for Dodo Modern Poets at  http://dodovidpoets.blogspot.co.uk/. In his spare time he is Secretary of the Green Party Trade Union group and Green Left.

Peter mistakenly thought that he was going to have a lot of spare time when he retired from his work as a Lecturer at the College of North West London In 2005. He has always had several intertwined strands to his life and activities. Visual art, specifically drawing and painting has been something that he has done all his life, recently he has experimented with printmaking in various forms, and sculpture using wood, metal and found materials. Possibly his visual art is “modern primitive” influenced by historical and contemporary art from non-industrial cultures, but an exception to this pseudo-nostalgia is his sculptural depiction of cephalopods and fish. Also Darwinism and the interplay of genetics, environment and randomness in shaping the forms and patterns of life, shape and form his various artworks. Shape shifting and menswear are involved as well

Why Greens support the Conservative Party Manchester Protest

Natalie Bennett published this message before yesetrday's demonstration at the Manchester Conservative Conference
On Sunday, the Conservative Party Conference starts in Manchester. And it’s the day that the People’s Assembly Against Austerity, with the TUC, is organising a protest march against the Tory government’s policies. This is a chance for the North (and people prepared to travel from the rest of the country) to deliver a message about the approach taken by the Conservative  government since its surprise election in May.

It clearly needs that message, since for a party that won the support of less than a quarter of eligible voters, or even if viewed charitably, the support of 37% of those who chose to vote, it has been tearing ahead with a range of extreme measure. Those range from the human-rights-attacking Trade Union Bill to a concerted attack on the renewable energy industry, from slashing even further already inadequate benefits for low-paid workers to softening up on the bankers even while the fraud-ridden, corrupt sector continues to present a threat to all of our economic futures.

This, while our Conservative government’s presiding over a so-called economic recovery built on consumer debt and a housing price bubble in the South East (nothing can go wrong there then, we know from experience), and failing to rebalance the economy towards making goods and growing food, the rebalancing that we desperately need.

Unsurprisingly, as I travel the country, I’ve seen anger about its approach, about a government that’s further promoting the interests of the 1% of the richest at the cost of the rest of us, while ignoring the need to act on the critical global issue of climate change – indeed actively suppressing our renewable energy industry and pulling the rug out from under small businesses and community projects while funding the interests of its friends in the oil and gas industries.

It was in Sheffield,  only 10 days after the election, that I first saw the signs of a growing resistance to the Conservative plans, a groundswell that has grown and developed in the months since.
A hastily-organised anti-austerity march then drew more than 1,000 people, and had representation from a wide range of organisations. There wasn’t just the brilliant 999 Call for the NHS, protesting the privatisation of our great national asset, and anti-eviction housing campaigns, and groups calling for a fair, humane immigration policy, but also young teachers and trainee teachers, resisting the turning of our schools into exam factories.

That’s clearly the view of more and more people around the country. The Tory government doesn’t have a mandate for its actions, it was elected through a 19th-century electoral system that’s entirely passed its replace-by date, it is impoverishing much of the country for the benefit of the few, its economic plan isn’t working even in its own terms.

There will be a chance next May to express a view about that in fair, proportional elections in Wales and Scotland, in London, and in local council elections, but the chances of this government listening are slight.

Taking to the streets, people expressing their view about the exploitation of the many by the few, about the failures of our current politics, is an essential step towards real political change – the hunger for which was shown by the green surge that’s seen Green Party membership more than treble in a year and us win 1.1 million votes in the general election, and the comprehensive victory by a left-positioned SNP against rightwing Labour in the general election in Scotland.

Judging from the response I saw at a preparatory meeting, again in Sheffield, this week, the march in Manchester on Sunday is going to be big. It’s building on the huge anti-austerity marches  in June, on the massive outpouring of support for the Refugees Welcome marches  last month. This is a movement that’s growing fast – people are increasingly grasping that politics should be something you do, not that’s done to you.

Sunday’s part of a series of events linked to the Tory conference – I’m particularly looking forward to the People’s Post rally on Monday night – so if you can’t make it on the Sunday, please come along another day.

Keeping up the pressure is important – the government’s ideology that can be traced back in a direct line to Margaret Thatcher is clearly on its last legs. It will fall with David Cameron and his narrow majority of 12 in the Commons.

You can help make that happen before 2020. For the sake of our economy, our society and the planet it needs to happen before 2020.

I hope to see you in Manchester.

30 Sep 2015

Caroline Lucas on Climate Change, the Corbyn phenomena and the EU

On Sunday 27th September Caroline gave a speech to he Green Party autumn conference.

The full speech is below:

In 10 weeks’ time, the world’s leaders will gather in Paris for the next round of international climate talks.
We’re at a crossroads: climate change is accelerating, the daily lives of millions are already being devastated by the consequences, and time is running out. 
And we are under no illusions. For more than 20 years, governments have been meeting at global conferences to talk endlessly about the crisis, yet greenhouse gas emissions have continued to rise.
For those of us who remember Copenhagen and Kyoto, Lima and Nairobi, it’s easy to be cynical. World leaders jet in. They fail to do a deal – then either pretend they’ve saved the world, or break down in bitter recriminations.
What will be different this time? Well, it being Paris, I’m sure the champagne will be properly chilled and the canapés second to none. But the fear is that once again our leaders will put their own, short-term political interests above those of their citizens.
Once again, the main winners will be the corporations and their lobbyists. The stakes are high and the obstacles even higher.
We know that global corporations and governments will not easily give up the profits they reap through the extraction of coal, gas and oil reserves. The brilliant 350.org tell us that just 90 companies are responsible for two-thirds of recorded greenhouse gas emissions worldwide.
Genuine responses to climate change threaten corporate power and wealth, threaten free market ideology, threaten the structures and subsidies that support and underwrite them. But resistance is fertile. And Paris is as much a beginning as it is an end.
Because in 10 weeks’ time, Paris will also be home to the world’s largest non-violent direct action civil disobedience. It will be home to a mass mobilisation from global movements that aim to leave political leaders no other choice than to change everything.
Conference, the Stone Age didn’t end because we ran out of stone. It ended because we had a vision of something we thought was better.
And so in and after Paris, we will be articulating a vision of a fairer, more compassionate world, where energy is in people’s hands, not the hands of corporations, and powered by the sun, the wind and the waves. And sending a message, loud and clear, as we do from our own conference here today, that we need to leave fossil fuels in the ground.
That the era of fossil fuels must end.
That change also requires a transformation in the way we do politics.
The future we want for our children is not going to be created through the politics of the past. When everything has changed so much, and the threats we face as a society and a planet are so deep and complex, we need a new kind of political life.
From Obama’s first election, to the Arab Spring, from Spain to Greece, from Scotland to the Green surge, and now Corbynism – politics is increasingly defined by waves of energy that swell up – seemingly from nowhere – and coalesce around people, parties and decisions.
These waves are not, sadly, the monopoly of those who believe in a better world. The future can also be more brutish and authoritarian, if we let it. 
But by being open to doing politics differently, we can ensure the future is about change made by and for people, in places and ways that make sense for them.
Of course, we need an effective state to intervene on many issues such as the regulation of global financial markets. But more than anything, the politics of the future must be about the creation of platforms, spaces and spheres in which people can collectively change the world – from workplace democracy and self-management, to civic engagement and generating our own community renewable energy. 
But these efforts will be fatally undermined if the neoliberal deregulating zeal of the Tories remains the dominant force in British politics.
Slashing public services; stamping out trade union rights; and environmental vandalism on an epic scale – ripping up energy efficiency measures, privatising the Green Investment Bank, and taking a wrecking ball to what was once our thriving solar industry.
Conference, we say enough. We are working for something better.
And Conference, being in a position to actually deliver that vision of something better is what, I believe, makes it so imperative that we see a realignment of progressive votes to maximise electoral impact.
Finding and cooperating with others with whom we share a belief in a much more equal, democratic and sustainable world.
Of course we will have differences. But we also know that no one individual, no one party, has a monopoly on wisdom. Cancelling out each other's votes is bad enough, but fighting in essentially the same terrain for the same issues and fundamentally the same belief set is madness, when it simply lets the Tories in. 
We share a commitment to a much more equal, democratic and sustainable world.  It is beholden on us to find a way to make the desirable feasible. In a world as complex and rich as ours, we need an equally complex and rich political response. To create a different mood, culture and sentiment to our national politics – one where we see that our differences can become a source, not of division, but of strength.
Conference, the truth is, we need a progressive Labour Party – if that's what Jeremy Corbyn transforms it to be – to do well. Because, like you and me, it’s part of the movement for change.
Progressives are spread about the political battlefield – often more intent on fighting each other – and not the real enemy. But things are changing fast. Old tribal loyalties, that are blind to the good in others, are dying away. We can – we must – respond to that change.
And conference, I’m about to say something a bit controversial!
Who has been one of the most effective advocates of human rights in Parliament? Conservative MP David Davies. Who has pushed the case tirelessly for a reformed voting system? UKIP MP Douglas Carswell.
If we can make common cause, on a case by case basis, even with those with whom we most profoundly disagree on most issues, then why not with those with whom we have so much in common, in other progressive parties?
There is here a simple truth.  We are stronger when we work together.
We know this in our own lives, as families, communities, amongst our friends and in our workplaces. This is one of the inspiring principles of the co-operative movement, of the trade union movement.
And I believe it should guide us as a political movement – strong and self-confident in ourselves, but also ready to reach out to work with others.  With 1.1 million votes we Greens have a vital place in shaping that future, and a distinctive responsibility to the politics of people and the environment, over the politics of individualism and greed.
We don’t have forever to get this right, and I don’t say it will be easy. But Conference, if we’re serious about the urgency of our task, I believe we have no other option.

As in politics, so in Europe. The same underlying principle that we are stronger when we work together.
That doesn’t mean closing our eyes to what is wrong with the European Union. Too much power is in the hands of the elites.  Too little democracy and accountability. Ordinary people feeling closed out from its decisions.
But the same can be said about our own British Parliament. Concentration of power, corruption, remoteness.
Our response to that is not to say, ‘let’s do without Parliament’. It’s to say we must reform it.
The same can be said of the United Nations. But would the world be better off if there were no international institutions to try – yes, failing much of the time, but still trying – to solve the world’s problems?
From the climate crisis to the refugee crisis, from air pollution to workers rights, consumer protection to hazardous waste, we face so many challenges that can only be tackled at a European level.
We need institutions where we can meet as Europeans and try and resolve these issues. And as with the realignment of progressive politics, we have a duty to engage, and to recognise that much for which the EU is criticised is the responsibility of the individual member states.
Greece is, in the main part, suffering because of the intransigence of free-market national governments.
TTIP – the deeply damaging Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership - is simply an extension of the free-market logic that pervades all trade relationships negotiated by right-wing governments like our own, and others across Europe.
The way we can free Europe from the forces of globalisation and elitism is not by walking away, but by fighting at the ballot box at general elections in every member state.
As Greens we are committed to the principle of EU existence, to working internationally on the shared issues we face, and to making Europe better from within.
If we want the kind of future we believe is possible, then we need to harness the amazing energy, passion and skills that can be found throughout our party.
Our members have always been the life-blood of our organisation. Democracy, participation and giving people a voice is at the very core of our identity.
And at a time when other political parties are looking to us, to try and rediscover radical ideas such as a party conference that is there to make policy, not look good on TV, it seems right to take some ideas from them in return.
One of these is how we can best nurture our talent, including bringing on the next generation of Green MPs: potential leaders and opinion formers who have the judgement, commitment and a propensity for the incredible hard work that it takes to get elected under our first past the post system.
We will be asking an awful lot from them in the years to come. We must do everything we can for them in return.
That’s why, today, I am proud to announce the launch of Generation Green – a new programme to nurture talent within our party.
It will start by giving five of our election candidates the kinds of training and preparation that their rivals in the other political parties have always accessed. It’s part of a vision to make our party stronger from the grassroots up; to amplify the voices setting out why we are distinct. Leading by example. The party of the future.