Gordon Birtwistle MP - Keynote Speaker at Autumn Conference and Dinner
By Joan Garrity
Originally published by East Midlands Liberal Democrats
Really pleased and excited to announce that Gordon Birtwistle, MP for Burnley is coming to speak to us at our Autumn Regional Conference on 17th November 2012 at The Agricultural Business Centre, Bakewell, Derbyshire, and will be the keynote speaker at the Regional Dinner in the evening.
Lord Roger Roberts of Llandudno is our other parliamentarian at conference.
Gordon was one of the "surprises" in the 2010 General Election when he took Burnley from Labour, with a majority of nearly 2000. Just shows you what hard work and dedication can do.
Gordon Birtwistle is Mr Burnley. He is the former mayor, the current Council Leader and has been a Burnley councillor for 25 years. His work has always been for the ordinary people of Burnley: the small guy against the system.
Gordon's strongest passions are for Burnley General Hospital, where he is the voice of the town. He is fighting fiercely against Labour's downgrading of the Accident and Emergency department, against Labour's ward closures and against Labour's movement of services to Blackburn. Gordon has taken the matter to the heart of the government. He has been negotiating with the Trust and has been keeping the campaign in the public eye.
Gordon took control of Burnley Council in 2006 after 30 years of Labour neglect by promising to clean the town's streets. Within a year, ten new litter-pickers were sweeping the streets the old-fashioned way. Six months later the Council leapt from category 4 (poor) to category 1 (highly effective) in clearing fly-tipping, and was the seventh most improved council in the country for recycling.
Gordon first became the town's champion after successfully fighting the closure of Burnley care homes. He campaigned with three retired residents from the homes, who became known as 'The Three Musketeers'. Gordon went on to raise a record £63,000 as mayor, for the mayor's charity, to purchase a prostate cancer scanner at the hospital.
Until recently Gordon's business was in engineering, trading in machines used to manufacture metal parts, at one point employing 40 people. Gordon now dedicates himself to public service full time. Gordon is married with two grown-up children, and in his spare time enjoys keeping fit, golf and gardening
EM Regional Conference Chair