Frank Field MP
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Remembering Bill Lungley

6
Aug

My advent into Birkenhead in 1979 was due to the three musketeers – Peter Roberts, Bill Nock, and Bill Lungley.

These three were members of a trade union branch at Port Sunlight and this branch gave me my only nomination so I could be considered as Labour’s parliamentary candidate in the 1979 election.

Almost immediately after the local Party had chosen their parliamentary candidate to replace Edmund Dell, we were tipped into a General Election during the ‘winter of discontent’.

On that Easter Day, the sun came out and people who had been haranguing me for how badly we had behaved in that winter of discontent now referred to the event in the past tense. I thought I had a chance of getting in with a majority, however small.

Once elected I worked on many occasions with Bill Lungley as he was one of the councillors in the Birkenhead ward. He was easy to work with.

You always knew where Bill was on the big issues of the day. If he gave his word he would do his very best to deliver. And he was assiduous in taking up complaints that individual constituents either gave to him directly or wanted directed through me.

I remember him taking me to Tranmere Rovers. As we got out the car some wag called out, ‘There’s Frank, there must be an election!’ I didn’t know it then but weeks later Mrs Thatcher would call the 1983 election.

Bill in his latter years was brilliantly looked after by his wife, Beryl. He was a truly wonderful Labour representative in Birkenhead and, for all of us who knew him, part of us died when we learnt the news of his death.

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