Remembering Viv Bingham
Posted by jonathanfryer on Tuesday, 6th March, 2012
Viv Bingham, President of the Liberal Party 1981-1982, who has died, was one of those politicians who never quite made it, in the sense of succeeding in getting elected . He tried often enough, standing for Parliament in Heywood and Royston (February and October 1964), Hazel Grove (1979), Derbyshire West (1983) and Stalybridge and Hyde (2005). He also had a stab at the European Parliament in 1979. In the days of the old Liberal Party Council, he was often a thorn in the leadership’s side and at later Liberal Democrat conferences he often found his natural allies among the young. He was granted an OBE in recognition of his political activities but never got the peerage he felt he richly deserved, having toiled away for decades in furthering the Liberal and Liberal Democrat cause. Despite his eye on the ermine and his experience in the business world, he was remarkably unstuffy and saw himself very much on the Left of British politics, actively supporting CND. Viv summed up his passion for Liberalism in one word: Freedom, and he raged against injustice. He could at times be a charicature of a gruff Northerner and at others the total gentleman, rooted in family and community, but with a non-Conformist compassion that embraced the whole of humanity.
RIP Vivian (Viv) Bingham 1932-2012