If I were to be straight talking and honest I'd say the last five days were probably my fave times at party conference in last five years. It is gorgeous to be adored and it was really sunny. Jeremy must feel pretty warm and fuzzy if the way I feel is anything to go by. But and it is a big but... we need to draw a line under the love-in, stop talking to each other and start talking and listening to the non revolutionary non adoring sorts.
Dear Tom Watson... I was so heartened, like many, to see Labour's new leader Jeremy Corbyn call for a 'kinder politics'. However, given you're not so kind and frankly laughably hypocritical comments about the Liberal Democrats today, am I to assume this is the first Labour u-turn under yet another feckless leader?
I'll cheat and start first with day 0, Saturday, when I first arrived in Brighton. First time in Brighton, first time in a Labour conference. The sun was shining, the sea was iridescent, looking like a close sister of a Greek island's sea front in the Aegean sea. All good omens about the Labour conference for a conference virgin...
In effect, what happened over the summer is that a new movement emerged. Restless with an unsatisfactory status quo which no longer serves Britain, people in their tens of thousands turned to Labour as their political party of choice. It is the task of the whole party to welcome our new colleagues, to listen, learn and perhaps adapt our party's culture and practices to these exciting new challenges.
Yes, the conference in Manchester has had a certain air of expectation that Labour will win in 2015. There is not, however, the excitement that one would expect at the Labour conference preceding their entry to government, and Miliband's speech did not inspire in the way a man giving his last speech as Leader of the Opposition should do.