The SLF came about largely in response to the Liberal Democrats going into coalition with the Conservatives and also to act as a counterweight to a section of the party, often termed the "Orange Bookers”, who many grass roots members regarded as taking the party down a more right-wing path.

That was why I stood as a council member back in 2012.  I was keen to keep the party on track to deliver on the social aspect of liberalism, as well as on all the other facets that come from the philosophy and values behind liberalism, such as personal liberty, internationalism and the environment.  

Much of the work that the SLF has done in the intervening years has been inward-facing - of a necessity - to hold our MPs to account for the work they were doing in Government and to ensure that these social aspects of liberalism were being considered as Lib Dem ministers were formulating new policy and MPs were deciding which way to vote on significant, new Bills in parliamentary debates.

So why do we need the SLF now?  

This is a crunch time in British politics.  Just as the rapid and exponential advances in technology have brought about creative destruction in so many areas of our lives, I believe that something similar is happening in the political arena.  There is an incredible need to make the case for social liberalism - and the space to do so - as the country has lurched to the right and the Labour party has lost all purpose.

We have a newly elected council and four years after being first elected to the council, I am now the elected chair.  I am very clear that the SLF is entering a new phase and needs to be outward facing and campaigns-based as well as continuing to lead on new thought leadership within the liberal movement. 

It is early days yet in this new phase of the SLF, but would invite you to keep coming back to the site and on social media to see what we are doing and what initiatives and campaigns we are taking forward.  We aim to be a vibrant, open, radical and - in particular - relevant movement in British politics at this crucial time.  

Please do consider joining the SLF.

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