Monday, January 15, 2007

A Tribute to Christine Bedier

Christine Bedier, one of the Parties most effective and dedicated campaigners, died on Sunday morning after a long illness. Christine made an impact upon everyone she came across in the Party and heaven help you if you were not as committed and active as she was! But whatever happened you knew whether you were a campaigner, a candidate, a volunteer, councillor or MP she would work her socks off for you.

Christine was a constituency agent in Dover where she organised a marginal constituency to ensure David Shaw held his seat in 1992. Christine then took on the role as Regional Campaign executive for the Highlands of Scotland which involved travelling hundreds of miles and across seas to attend small meetings – Christine never complained.

After her time in Scotland Christine moved back to England to become an ACD, firstly for South London, then at the Party’s request took on the difficult job of sorting out the campaign organisation in Kent prior to the 2005 General election. Christine could always be relied upon to do a good and effective job and, if the party required it, would turn her hand to anything. Christine was one of a very few genuine campaigners employed by the Party.

In her personal life Christine was devoted to her beloved husband Albert and in the last few years had the joy of grand children to spoil rotten. Christine made a difference.

By David Canzini, former Head of Campaigns at CCHQ


Anonymous said...

Christine was like Marmite. You either loved her or hated her. Unlike Marmite, I thought she was one of the best things to happen to my local Conservative Association in Carshalton and Wallington.

I learnt effective campaigning from Christine. As Association chairman, I once addressed the National Conservative Convention basically telling a few navel gazers to get working in the seats that we needed to recapture rather than pontificating on other matters. As I returned to the back of the room, Christine announced proudly to a colleague "He's one of mine."

Christine was one of the hardest working party worker that I have met and her untimely death will be a great loss to the Party.

Anonymous said...

I first met Christine when I was a Constituency Chairman in North London. I had some business south of the river and had to head down to meet her. Someone warned me in advance that she was ‘a terrible cow as tough as old boots’ and ‘a very scary lady’. It was with some trepidation then that I drove down to, I think it was Sevenoaks, and parked my car.

What I found when I had climbed the stairs to her office was one of the loveliest most genuine agents I have ever met. It was clear from the outset that she would brook no nonsense and she was there to campaign, win elections and run associations, which she did with ruthless efficiency. As long as you shared these laudable goals and were prepared to do things rather than just sit around and talk about it, she was on your side and would not spare any effort to help. As I kept bumping into her over the years, and especially during first London Mayor and Assembly campaign, I got to know her well and my respect for her increased still further. If Christine was involved in something then you knew it would be done and done well.

I have now not seen Christine for a number of years as I gradually spent less time on politics and more time on my family, also I drifted north and she south, but I still remember her with huge fondness and appreciation for all she did for me and taught me, and for all the times she made me smile and get off my backside and do some work even facing impossible odds, not because we could win but because it was the right thing to do and we could make a difference for someone. She made a difference time and time again to countless numbers of people many of whom never knew her at yet are in her debt.

My condolences to her family.

Michael Flynn