Legislate for Life: Belfast Talk on January 25th
At 7.30pm on Thursday 25th of January in Belfast, Lord (David) Alton will be giving a talk entitled “Legislate for Life” at St Brides Hall, 38 Derryvolgie Avenue, Belfast BT9 6FP . All welcome. In Northern Ireland today 100,000 people are alive because they refused to enact the 1967 laws.
May 2018 be a very happy New Year
And I said to the man who stood at the gate of the year:
“Give me a light that I may tread safely into the unknown.”
And he replied:
“Go out into the darkness and put your hand into the Hand of God. That shall be to you better than light and safer than a known way.” So I went forth, and finding the Hand of God, trod gladly into the night. And He led me towards the hills and the breaking of day in the lone East.”
See the following link for December 2017 update on progress on Theodore House :
Universe Christmas edition page 48 – click here
To hear Dr.Alveda King – Martin Luther King’s niece – Chen GuangChen the blind Chinese lawyer imprisoned for 4 years for exposing forced abortion – click on David Alton’s remarks marking more than 8 million UK abortions – here:
And here is someone, 30 years ago, leading the London Marathon Race and using the opportunity to support the unborn child https://youtu.be/9tuwo_Xd5fw?t=1392
Click here for details of how the day went:
Thanks to Mr.Speaker and the Lord Speaker Parliament was lit red to commemorate those who have died for the religion or beliefs.
Click here to read the Toast to William Pitt the Younger given at the City of Chester Pitt Club
Blue Planet, Plastics, and Their Impact on Marine Life Raised In Parliament , November 22nd
Lord Alton of Liverpool (Crossbench Peer)
My Lords, did the Minister see the alarming findings of the BBC’s programme on the disposal of plastics and the effects on whales, fish and other marine life described in “Blue Planet”? What advice are the Government giving to local authorities and others to deal more creatively with the disposal of plastics—and indeed the replacement of plastics by materials that can be recycled more easily?
- Lord Bourne of Aberystwyth (Conservative, Government Minister)
My Lords, I did not have the privilege of seeing that programme, which I regret as I heard it was extremely good. The noble Lord is right to focus attention on some of the challenges we face. We are improving our position as a nation, but there is much to do. We are in favour of upping the targets that are currently being looked at, and what that improvement will be has yet to be announced—the current target is 60%. The noble Lord is right about the particular problem of marine challenges, which we are also looking at. Black plastics are a particular problem, and we have a working group looking at that.
House of Lords January 9th 2018
My Lords, can the Minister tell us what percentage of the some 500,000 tonnes of plastic waste that are estimated to be exported from this country to China each year are actually capable of being recycled? Further, in his response to the noble Lord, Lord Teverson, he did not say anything about incineration. There has been some speculation that the Government might support incineration, but would that not be simply adding one environmental degradation to another?
My Lords, I used the phrase energy recovery. That is via the use of incineration and the source of fuel it provides is a much better use than landfill. Moreover, landfill quantities have been reduced dramatically. Some 3.7 million tonnes of plastic waste are created in this country of which 0.4 million tonnes is sent to China. That actually represents a reduction from 0.7 million tonnes of waste being exported in 2010, so a reducing amount of waste is going to China. However, it is clear that we need to do better, and that is why we are working on this issue.
The Plight of the Rohingya Raised in the House of Lords
Plight of the Rohingya raised again today – November 23rd
Lord Alton of Liverpool (CB)
My Lords, in addition to bringing people to justice, and in addition to the security that is required to enable return to Burma, does the noble Lord accept that the root cause of this was the denial of citizenship to the Rohingya people? Will he say what discussions we have had with Daw Aung San Suu Kyi and the Government in Burma to that effect, and whether we will be imposing sanctions on members of the military who have been responsible for these depredations?
For Minister’s Reply See:
Lord Alton of Liverpool (CB)
Two months ago, the Rakhine advisory commission established by Aung San Suu Kyi, and chaired by the former United Nations Secretary-General Kofi Annan, published a report that offered a way out of this morass. However, within hours of its publication, a small militant group attacked police posts, precipitating a grossly disproportionate response by the Tatmadaw, the Burmese army, leading to this current crisis.
In condemning the initial attacks, we should concur with the United Nations and be equally clear that the Burmese army’s response to those attacks amounts to crimes against humanity and ethnic cleansing. As one journalist put it, the Burmese army,
“wants to destroy an ethnicity, not end an insurgency”.
Continue reading at:
Click Here for “Truth Should Speak To Power” – hear the speech delivered to mark 50 years and 8 million lives ended:
Alton Herald 1967 Act Anniversary Here, for article on the 50th anniversary of the Abortion Act – October 27th 2017: and here for an interview about the anniversary: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pCu6iAjRjSA
Click here for Times Letter: October 26th Letter in the Times about Syrian Christian refugees.
Letter to the Times, September 28 from David Alton, Fiona Bruce MP, and Catharine West MP (Joint Chairs and Vice Chair of the All Party group on North Korea).
September 2017: North Korea’s Threat To World Peace
David Alton is Co-Chair of the All Party Parliamentary Group on North Korea with Fiona Bruce MP. You can read about the security crisis at:
But in all the talk about the nuclear threat, the exceptional brutality of the regime has been forgotten.
At the bottom of this page read about the approach that has never been tried in bringing change to North Korea – “Helsinki with a Korean Face”.
And listen to some musicians trying to wake the world up to North Korea’s human rights violations: “a state without parallel” (the United Nations Commission) – and share it with others:
Ooberfuse has a new song called Never Give Up out now — highlighting the plight of North Korean refugees (and all refugees).
MUSIC VIDEO: https://youtu.be/t6xIUyh3Wqg
STREAMING and DOWNLOAD LINK: https://soundcloud.com/ooberfuse/ooberfuse-never-give-up-1/s-2f1fe
The Never Give Up music video features Jihyun Park who fled North Korea and is now living in Manchester UK.
Ooberfuse are a songwriting duo composed of Hal St John and Cherrie Anderson from Woolwich, London. Their songs are audio footprints left behind by people impelled towards invisible things.
Fiona Bruce MP and David Alton, Joint Chairs of the All Party Group on North Korea with Jieun Baek
Details of the APG’s work available from James Burt email@example.com
Click here to read about Lancashire’s links to Gerard Manley Hopkins and J.R.R.Tolkien
and to discover the Tolkien Trail – the perfect summer walk.
Also see: https://davidalton.net/2017/01/19/tolkien-faith-and-fiction-liverpool-hope-university-lecture-marking-the-fiftieth-anniversary-of-j-r-r-tolkiens-involvement-in-the-translation-of-the-jerusalem-bible-and-the-link-between-his-faith-2/
For more information please see
Article 18 of the 1948 Universal declaration of Human rights insists that everyone has the right to believe, not to believe or to change their belief. The latest reality check on this forgotten, contemptuously disregarded Right can be read in the latest freedom of religion report issued by the State Department:
Letter in the Daily Telegraph, August 11th 2017.
Support the campaign for justice and practical help for the Syrians and Iraqi Christians and Yazidis who have been subjected to genoicde. To help, contact Caroline Hull, Aid to the Church In Need:
By phone: 01524 388739
Or by email: firstname.lastname@example.org
See Minsterial Response to the failure to bring perpetrators to justice and the failure to use British aid to help belaugured minorities (in July letter from the Foreign Office):
Also see University of Oxford, March 3rd 2017: The John Milton Lecture
August Official Ruling that 100,000 people are alive today in Northern Ireland thanks to their abortion law is correct.
This is an important story as it leaves in tatters the constant claims by abortion advocates worldwide that abortion restrictions do not reduce the number of abortions – this report shows when like with like are compared, on a conservative estimate 100,000 people are alive today in Northern Ireland because of their current legal situation on abortion – unlike the 8 million whose lives have been ended in Great Britain.
Ribble Valley Walk of Witness for the Right To Life on Bank Holiday Monday 2017
Visit the We’re All Equal Campaign Site
Kevin (Lord) Shinkwin introduced a Bill challenging discriminatory legislation and negative attitudes against unborn babies with disabilities:
Actor, Tommy Jessop, stars in award winning, new short film FIGHTER which asks important questions about the freewill of an adult with Down’s syndrome in the face of coercion (conscious or unconscious) from a parent.
FIGHTER, which stars Hampshire actor, Tommy Jessop, as an aspiring boxer, won best film and best cinematography at Film London and can be seen at the 2017 London Film Festival. Jury members described the film as an “unusual story that challenges one’s presumptions and asks questions about freedom and control”.
Both an exploration of amateur boxing and freedom of choice, Fighter is a tense, visceral human drama from writer Guy Bolton and director Bugsy Riverbank Steel about one man’s fight to follow his dreams. Fighter has Down’s Syndrome and finds himself torn between his over-bearing trainer, a sister who hates seeing him get hurt and a boxing committee unsure whether to sanction him to fight at all.
In preparation for the role, Tommy trained with world champion boxer Ryan Pickard and fellow actor Simon Kunz at the Repton Boxing Club in London.
More about Tommy Jessop: see www.tommyjessop.com
Tommy’s stage and screen credits include playing the lead opposite Nicholas Hoult in the BAFTA-nominated Coming Down the Mountain (Tiger Aspect for BBC1), appearing in Casualty, Holby City, Monroe, Doctors, Off their Rockers, starring in several BBC documentaries including Growing Up Downs which was nominated for an International Emmy. He has also played the lead or guest lead in various afternoon plays on Radio 4. In 2012 Tommy became the first professional actor with Down’s syndrome to play the title role Hamlet in the original language in theatres across the south of England.
Tommy has also recently been nominated best lead actor in a short film for his performance in Down & Out to be shown at the Southampton Film Festival 2017.
Follow Tommy Jessop on twitter @tommyjessop
Link to fighter Trailer: http://fightershort.com/portfolio/fightertrailer2017
Also see this moving clip on “the love chromosome”
- Plight of Orphaned Refugee Children Raised in Parliament.
- 2017.07.31 Letter from Baroness Williams to Lord Alton – does this mean the Government want to end their Dublin III responsibilities twoards refugee children after Brexit?
The story of Sir Nicholas Winton
- Lord Alton of Liverpool (CB)My Lords, as one of the signatories to the Dubs amendment, I signed it because it captured the spirit of Sir Nicholas Winton who, through the kindertransport, rescued 669 children from the Nazis. the Government should specifically prioritise the youngest and, indeed, orphaned children such as the brother and sister whose case I highlighted in your Lordships’ House a few days ago, who were sleeping on the forecourt of a derelict petrol station? They are aged 13 and 12 and were orphaned in Aleppo.
- Will the Minister also say what progress has been made on galvanising and co-ordinating the international community in assisting the 88,000 displaced young people now in Europe without parents and in establishing the fate of the 10,000 children who Europol has said have gone missing, and who must inevitably be at great risk of trafficking and exploitation?
#RedWednesday – 23rd November 2016 – and in 2017 #RedWednesday will be held on November 22nd.
The House of Parliament lit red on Red Wednesday in an act of solidarity with those who suffer for their faith or beliefs.
Click here for full details of Red Wednesday:
Westminster Hall – November 24th 2016 Launch of the Religious Freedom in the World Report – following Red Wednesday. Read the report at: http://www.aina.org/news/20161124130319.htm
Red Wednesday was an opportunity to stand up for faith and freedom; to put pressure on the UK government and the international community to protect people of faith, find solutions to the problems that are fuelling extremist violence and to make our world a safer place.
This picture was given to me in 1985 during an undercover visit to Moscow to highlight the plight of persecuted Christians and Jews.
It represents Stalin’s destruction of many Orthodox monasteries and churches and the destiny of countless believers sent to the Siberian Gulags.
Persecution of millions of people, becuase of the religion or belief, continues all over the world today. See:
“Silence in the face of evil is itself evil…not to speak is to speak. Not to act is to act.” Dietrich Bonheoffer
- Throughout the last year meetings have been held to promote Article 18 – Freedom of Religion or Belief – One was held in Nelson, Lancashire, on Sunday October 9th .
Also see this new Jubilee Campaign report on the plight of Pakistani Christians:
Foreign and Commonwealth Office Presentation: October 19th 2016
Why Freedom of Religion and Belief Is Particularly Relevant
Remarks and Power Point presentation may be viewed at: https://davidalton.net/media/
October 2016: eye-witness testimonies from Pakistan and Syria
PAKISTAN: ARCHBISHOP SEBASTIAN SHAW of Lahore.
Head of the largest Catholic diocese in Pakistan, he led the
Church’s response to the Easter Day 2016 Lahore Massacre
and other atrocities affecting Christians and other minorities.
See full report:
October 2016 Letter to the Times about Chemical Weapons Attacks in Sudan
October 22nd 2016:
In Reaction to the Indicative Evidence on the Use of Chemical Weapons by the Sudan Government:
The Sudan Peoples’ Liberation Movement (SPLM-N) has suspended all Political Engagement with the Sudan Government and Demanded that the Humanitarian Crisis and Civilian Protection to be Addressed Separately.
In September 2016: David Alton was presented with the Thomas More Religious Freedom Advocacy Award
September 2016 David opened a new Exhibition in Washington D.C. – September 16th 2016 – until March 2017 -Christian Heritage Centre exhibition on St.Thomas More and the Carrolls (the Foremost British-American Catholic Family) at the St.John Paul II Centre
In June 2016 David chaired the last of over 140 Roscoe Lectures which he founded in 1997 and after twenty years he retired as Professor oif Citizenship. In July David Alton was made a Fellow of Liverpool John Moores University .
Over the past couple of decades thousands of Good Citizenship Awards have been distributed and Roscoe Lectures have been staged by Liverpool John Moores University’s Roscoe Foundation For Citizenship. David Alton chaired 140 of the 141 Roscoe Lectures staged between 1997 and June 2016.
Professor Monica Grady CBE and Professor Nigel Weatherill, Vice Chancellor of Liverpool John Moores University with award winner Sam Walton, a PhD student at LJMU’s Astrophysics Research Institute.
Here, David Alton explains the background:
Good Citizenship Awards
Details of the Roscoe Lectures and the background to the life of William Roscoe and his poetry may be found at
2016 – Several Public Lectures, including:
Liverpool Hope University Lecture: Tolkien Faith and Fiction
You can follow the lecture with the link to the power point presentation slides at:
A Premier Radio Lecture: “The Battle of Beliefs – a matter of life and death” – Liverpool
and the 2016 Gonzaga – Delivered at The Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons, Glasgow.
View presentation at: Glasgow 2016
Click here for presentation
September 2016: Polish Lectures in Warsaw
2016 – Christian Heritage Centre Events and Exhibitions: the tale of Two Thomas’ s
Thomas Becket’s Fight For Conscience and Religious Freedom Commemorated at Westminster: Becket Week Events – go to https://davidalton.net/latest/
A Symposium on the relevance of Becket’s story, held at Lambeth, was sponsored by Christian Heritage Centre. Click here: Christian Heritage Centre added 7 new photos.
2016 – Burma’s Cardinal Charles Bo Visited Westminster and, at Mr.Speaker’s House, called for the promotion of human rights in Burma for “unity through diversity”: See
2016 Eleanor Rathbone: the Refugees’ M.P. – including a Reception, hosted by LJMU, in december 2016 and the January 2016 Roscoe Lecture to mark her life.
7Oth Anniversary of the death of Eleanor Rathbone.
To Listen to the Roscoe Lecture on January 14th 2016 on the life of Eleanor Rathbone go to:
Exhibition of Eleanor’s life at the House of Commons:
David Alton is Co-Chair of the All Party Parliamentary Group on North Korea
Jieun Baek, (a Belfer Center Fellow at Harvard Kennedy School and an expert on information flows into North Korea) gave a wonderful presentation (Wednesday evening) to the All Party Parliamentary group on North Korea about her new book, ‘North Korea’s Hidden Revolution: How the Information Underground is Transforming a Closed Society’. David Alton said that the best antidote to totalitarianism was the spread of ideas and knowledge of the alternatives which is why breaking North Korea’s information blockade is so important.
Fiona Bruce MP and David Alton, Joint Chairs of the All Party Group on North Korea with Jieun Baek
November 2016 Lord Alton chaired a meeting at which College Student’s Alliance for North Korean Human Rights talked about discrimination and human rights violations in North Korea, how people in Pyongyang receive external information, and how the group engages young people through their work. The meeting was also addressed by Seung Hoon Chae D.Phil (Ph.D) Candidate in Politics M.Phil. Politics and B.A. Philosophy, Politics, and Economics at the University of Oxford. he detailed his findings following interviews with some of the North Korean escapees now living in the United Kingdom.
With Seung Hon Chae after his presentation in the British Parliament on November 8th.
Details of the APG’s work available from James Burt email@example.com
March 2016 Eric Avebury died. Friends of Eric Avebury later gathered at the Royal Institution to celebrate Lord Avebury’s life and work. Eric’s causes included championing the Dalit “untouchables” in India and in promoting the Gypsy Caravan Sites Act. Whether at home or overseas Eric Avebury countered ill-informed prejudices and scapegoating. One of those who paid tribute to him at the Royal Institution was Damian Le Bas who said that Eric Avebury was “one of the greatest friends the Gypsies ever had.” See:
September 2016 Sir Trevor Jones, former leader of Liverpool City Council died
“Most of the things which really matter can be summed up in pithy straight-forward words such as justice, liberty, duty, freedom,mercy, conscience, dignity, family, faith, fairness – life itself. These are the things which make for the common good and give people hope.”
Thank you for taking the time to visit this website. It was originally created by volunteers who wanted to provide easier access to some of the speeches I have made and to some of the articles and books which I have written. Since then the site has been visited by over quarter of a million people from five continents with lots of positive and encouraging feedback.
Links on the site will take you to the contributions I made in the House of Commons between 1979 and 1997 – where I sat as a Liberal – and in the House of Lords – where I sit as an Independent Crossbench Peer – from 1997 until now.
There are also links to countries and issues about which I have taken a particular interest – such as poverty, gendercide, human cloning, and human trafficking. The site also features human rights reports on situations witnessed first-hand in countries like Sudan and Darfur, Congo, North Korea and Burma. There are power point presentations and audio from talks. There are also biographical details and some links to organisations which whom I work or which champion some of the causes featured on this site.
“Doing politics as if people mattered.”