Friday, 14 March 2014

Tony Benn Dies Aged 88 – An Icon of the English Left

Very sad to hear the news that Tony Benn has died. He had been very ill for a little while and when last I saw him in the flesh, which was a couple of years ago, he looked very frail.

I once saw him make a speech at The Free Trade Hall of all places in Manchester in I think 1980, and he was very powerful, electric even and really inspiring, and I left the event feeling as though the revolution was about to begin in the next week or so.

Times change of course, and the revolution (a peaceful one, of course) looks further away than ever now, but Tony Benn was the only figure on the left from the 70’s and 80’s and before that managed to keep up with the new politics of the left, attending Left Field at the Glastonbury festival for example and he could engage easily with the younger generations.

I thought of trying to get a video clip for this blog of Tony Benn in his prime, but in end thought it more appropriate to feature a recent one, like the one above, because he really did adapt with the times, and could be just as inspirational in his later years.

He will be sadly missed by all those of a radical political persuasion, young and old. He constantly reminded us of our power to change things, and to never give up hope. A great man indeed. 

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