Red Guard versus Old Guard? The influence of the Young Liberal movement on the Liberal Party in the 1960s and 1970s a witness seminar

In the 1960s and early 1970s the press coined the phrase the “Red Guard” to describe the radical politics of the youth wing of the Liberal Party. At the 1966 Party Conference in Brighton, the Red Guard sponsored an anti-NATO resolution. Over the next decade the YLs were active on a number of foreign policy areas. They were at the forefront of the opposition to apartheid and the Vietnam war and took a leading role in the Stop the Seventy Tour of South African cricket and rugby teams. The party leadership were disturbed by the activities of the youth wing, and Jeremy Thorpe set up a three-man commission which produced the Terrell Report. The report accused some of the Young Liberals of being communists.

Chair (Lord) Tony Greaves

Speaker Dr Matt Cole, Lecturer at the London School of Economics for the Hansard Society and author of Richard Wainwright, the Liberals and Liberal Democrats: Unfinished Business, shortly to be published by Manchester University Press

Witnesses who have agreed to attend are Gordon Lishman, William Wallace, Terry Lacey, Michael Steed and George Kiloh, and we welcome other testimony from audience members.

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