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Welcome to North Bedfordshire Liberal Democrats

Welcome to the website for the North Bedfordshire Liberal Democrats for information from the party and the latest news from the Council.

You can find out how to contact your local Lib Dem Councillor, and you can also follow us on twitter @BedfordLibDems and on Facebook @BedfordLD.

For news from the directly elected, Lib Dem Mayor of Bedford Borough, Dave Hodgson - please click here.

Recent News

  • Thameslink train
    Article: Dec 9, 2018

    The latest timetable changes are now available for both East Midlands Trains and Thameslink.

    The East Midlands Trains timetables are available here.

    The Thameslink timetables are here.

  • Liberal Democrat Campaigners Launch the Freeze Fares Campaign at Bedford Station
    Article: Dec 8, 2018

    In a scathing report on the notorious May 2018 rail timetable changes which caused huge disruption to Bedford services, the House of Commons Transport Select Committee has called for commuters' to have their 2019 season tickets frozen at 2018 prices.

    Mayor Dave Hodgson, who is campaigning for the Government to freeze fares for Bedford rail users due to the particular, ongoing upheaval they are suffering, welcomed the report, saying:

  • A block of flats under construction
    Article: Dec 7, 2018

    After pressure from Liberal Democrat Peers, the Government have announced major concessions on the Tenant Fees Bill.

    The amendment would significantly limit the fees that could be charged to a tenant by their landlord or lettings agent, require a greater amount of transparency when deciding not to refund a holding deposit, and limit the maximum security deposit a landlord can require to five weeks rent.

    Responding to the Government amendments, Liberal Democrat Housing Spokesperson John Shipley said "It is good to see the Government have listened to the concerns we raised during the progress of the Bill. These amendments will make a huge difference for tenants, who will save hundreds of pounds every year. We also want to congratulate Shelter, Citizens Advice and Generation Rent who have worked so hard to get this Bill in the right place."

    Many of the provisions in the Tenant Fees Bill were proposed in the previous session of Parliament by Lib Dem Peer Olly Grender, in her Renters' Rights Private Members' Bill.

    Commenting on the changes to the Bill, Bedford Borough Liberal Democrat Housing spokesperson Dean Crofts said "It is the vulnerable in our society who are most affected by the extortionate fees imposed by landlords and lettings agencies. The inability to pay these fees upfront can often lead to homelessness. While I welcomed the Government bringing forward this Bill, there were a number of outstanding issues that could have had severe consequences for low income tenants or tenants on benefits in the private rented sector. There is still more work to be done to get tenants a fairer deal, but I am delighted that the Government have listened to our suggestions and others to improve this Bill. The task now is to get this change for tenants through as quickly as possible."

  • Mayor Dave Hodgson and Councillor Wendy Rider at Bedford Hospital
    Article: Dec 6, 2018

    The Care Quality Commission has now released its final report, and ratings, on Bedford Hospital and the overall rating is 'Requires Improvement'.

    The report shows some improvements in surgery and outpatients but has found a decline in the urgent and emergency services. Hopefully the new Urgent Treatment Centre will help ease the pressure on Accident and Emergency going forward and we will see improvements in future.

  • Ed Davey
    Article: Dec 5, 2018

    Responding to the Chief Inspector of Prisons' report on the crisis at HMP Birmingham, Liberal Democrat Home Affairs Spokesperson Ed Davey MP has called for urgent action to reduce overcrowding in prisons and recruit more prison officers.

    The inspection report, published yesterday found that violence and drug-taking were rife at HMP Birmingham, with many staff working in fear and unable to maintain control. In August, HM Chief Inspector of Prisons issued an "urgent notification" letter alerting the Government to the appalling conditions in the prison. He has also issued urgent notifications this year in respect of three other prisons: Nottingham, Exeter and Bedford.

    Although the Government has reduced HMP Birmingham's population since stepping in, the latest official figures show that it was still over-capacity by more than 200 prisoners at the end of October. Figures obtained by the Liberal Democrats under a Freedom of Information request show that, as of 31st March, 182 prisoners at HMP Birmingham were serving short-term sentences of less than 12 months. The President of the Prison Governors Association said last year that such sentences "don't work and are pointless", and the Justice Secretary has admitted that they are ineffective at reducing re-offending.

  • Mayor Dave Hodgson by the River in Bedford
    Article: Dec 4, 2018

    Mayor Dave Hodgson has welcome the announcement of £4.6m of one-off funding for Bedfordshire Police, but asserted that it does not change the force's ongoing, severe shortage of annual funding. Noting that the Chief Constable has stated that the funding will help the force to cover the costs of activity already carried out in tackling gang, gun and knife crime, Mayor Dave has also pointed out that the money will not fund much-needed extra policing.

  • Mayor Dave Hodgson and Cllr Wendy Rider on Manton Lane, Bedford
    Article: Dec 3, 2018

    Mayor Dave Hodgson has announced that as part of comprehensive traffic decongestion plans a new footbridge will be installed over Manton Lane in Bedford. A previous footbridge was replaced over ten years ago with a pedestrian crossing in an infamous move by the former Conservative County Council, despite the fact that the location already suffered from severe traffic congestion on a daily basis.

  • Liberal Democrat Campaigners Launch the Freeze Fares Campaign at Bedford Station
    Article: Dec 2, 2018

    Mayor Dave Hodgson has described the 3.1% average rail fares increase announced today as an 'outrage' from which Bedford rail users must be protected due to the unique array of failures and disruptions they have suffered. He also renewed his call on the government to freeze fares from Bedford

    Mayor Dave said: "Bedford rail users have suffered a unique array of disruptions and failures, and another fares hike on top of the high prices they're already paying is an outrage. The case for them to be protected from yet another excessive rail fares rise is overwhelming.'