John McDonnell: “Clause 4 – let’s bring it back!”

On an autumnal evening, Sunday 8 September, around 50 supporters of the Labour4Clause4 campaign gathered in the Seven Dials Club in Covent Garden for an evening of rib-tickling entertainment. The Stand Up for Clause Four gig, generously sponsored by the Bakers and Allied Food Workers Union, was a runaway success.

Crispin Flintoff from ‘Stand Up for Labour’ compered the evening’s entertainment and his quick wit had people chuckling even before the first act.

Things kicked off with the coordinator of the Labour4Clause4 campaign, Rob Sewell, introducing the campaign. “What we want to do is put socialism back on the agenda” Rob explained to fervent applause and excited cheering. All the proceeds of the event will help the campaign at the upcoming Labour Party conference, where an amendment to reinstate Clause 4 in the Labour Party constitution will be discussed.

Before long, Patrick Monahan took to the stage. His fast-paced, self-deprecating, cheeky humour had the audience in stitches. He was followed by the off-the-cuff, conversational, at times physical jokes of Norman Lovett, which went down a treat.

The evening was rounded off by shadow chancellor John McDonnell speaking in support of the campaign to restore Clause 4. He wasn’t able to attend the event in person (it being his birthday!) but he called into the gig to express his solidarity.

John explained that a Corbyn Labour government would work for “the genuine implementation of the principles embodied in the original Clause 4 – an irreversible shift of wealth and power to working people in our society”. He spoke about the “radical socialist manifesto” that’s required to get “a socialist Labour government”. And he concluded with a rousing appeal – “Clause 4 – let’s bring it back!”

All in all, it was mightily encouraging to see so many people turn out on a Sunday night to have a laugh and raise funds for the campaign. The several hundred pounds raised from tickets, t-shirts, badges, and raffle tickets will go a long way to helping us win the fight to bring back Clause 4 later this month at the Labour Party conference.