I WOULD like to refer to
the letter from Paddy
Keenan of 30 May. If he
thinks that the 1997 to
2010 Labour governments
were the worst in history
then he’s of course entitled
to his opinions.


He will not be surprised to
learn that the Andover
Labour Party takes a somewhat
different view. It really
isn’t possible to reply to all
of his points but let’s focus
on the NHS and the banking

Not long after Labour left
office in 2010 the British
Attitudes Survey found that
satisfaction with the NHS
was at its highest ever

Labour must have then
done something right and
indeed satisfaction was so
high it was embarrassing to
the Conservative/Liberal
Democrat coalition as it
undermined their narrative
that another reorganisation
of the NHS had to take place.
That reorganisation has
now taken place, hasn’t it?
Waiting lists are up again,
the number of nurses down
by thousands, satisfaction is
well down again, too, and
the NHS is being privatised
slowly by stealth and, while
we’re here, what would
UKIP do?

They would cut and privatise
the NHS even more than
the coalition.

To be honest I think I share
the wish with Mr Keenan
that the banking sector
should have been more regulated.

Labour followed the
relaxed regulatory policies
started by the Conservatives
in the 1980s, while a more
stringent regulatory
approach would have avoided
the bad loans that the
banks made leading up to
the 2007/2008 crash. In the
end Gordon Brown was left
carrying the blame while
the grand architect of the
policy, Margaret Thatcher,
was venerated and treated to
a funeral that costed the UK
taxpayer millions.

Finally, Labour considers
that membership of the EU
is good for the UK and, far
from the EU economy stagnating
as claimed by Mr
Keenan, the recent spring
2014 forecast points to a continuing
economic recovery
in the EU. Growth is set to
reach 1.6 per cent in the EU
and will improve further in
2015 to two per cent. With so
much of the UK’s trade with
our nearest neighbours we
contend that this growth
will also be good for jobs and
growth for the UK economy

Alan Cotter, chairman,
Andover Labour Party,
The Drove, Andover