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  1. Politics
19 March 2015

The Returning Officer: Westmorland II

A typical idealist but with no marked ability to deal with the hard facts of life.  

By Stephen Brasher

In Voices from Labour’s Past, David Clark focuses on the party’s pioneers, including some in Westmorland. The seat was first contested by Labour in 1924, months after the local party was set up. The Yorkshire Post described Labour’s first candidate, Reginald P Burnett, as “a typical idealist but with no marked ability to deal with the hard facts of life”. In 1929, the candidate was Walter Bone, a Quaker estate agent and councillor from Scunthorpe.

In 1931, E V Short was nominated. The wife of the Unitarian minister, Short and her husband had stood in local elections wherever he was appointed. She stood in 1935 but resigned her candidacy in 1938, declining “to make any statement which would be disloyal to the party”.

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