Edward Woodward – Cornish memories of a star who signed my nomination papers…

Edward Woodward

Edward Woodward was kind enough to sign my nomination papers and join the Liberal Democrats at the same time...

Edward Woodward, actor, star and gentleman has died aged 79. Most people, of my generation, know him from ‘The Equalizer’, but I remember the day he nominated me to stand for the Calstock Division of Cornwall County Council in 1997.

Arriving at his beautiful house, near Calstock in Cornwall, he had one of those beautiful drives that my little car looked slightly out of place on, but nonetheless a beaming Edward came to the door, and myself and Yuan Potts were beckoned into his house for the best cup of coffee I have ever had in the most elegant kitchen I had seen.

The meeting was mainly about his coming out as a Liberal Democrat, in the press, that morning to support Colin Breed in the general election campaign of 1997.

In 1997, the County Council elections were on the same day, so I wisely took my nomination papers for Edward, and his wife, Michele Dotrice, to sign, as we both lived in the same ward.  They were more than glad to. 

On time, Paul Tyler, MP for North Cornwall, Robin Teverson MEP and Colin arrived for the photo call for the local press and media, and as this was very recent to his starring in ‘The Equalizer’ the Western Morning News ran with the story – Woodward Equalizes Campaign for the Lib Dems.

As well as walking away with my nominations and his membership subscription to the Liberal Democrats he also agreed to chair the party rally, to be held in Liskeard, on the eve of the general election, to be addressed by Shirley Williams and David Steel.

It was a great event and Edward chaired it with panache and style, in a way that only real stars can.

I met him just a few times, but he was genuine and decent man who made you feel welcome and special.  A real star who kept his feet on the ground and was a genuine encouragement to a young agent!

I achieved a 46% swing in the election but still came second – work that one out!

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