THE LABOUR conference today opened with the National Anthem – for the first time EVER – before emotional Keir Starmer paid tribute to the Queen.
In his opening speech, Sir Keir described the late Her Majesty as “this great country’s greatest monarch” and declared himself “proud to lead our party’s tribute to her”.
Sir Keir Starmer opened Labour conference this morning with a tribute to the late Her Majesty[/caption]
Singing the anthem is a break in tradition for Labour, with the party traditionally ending its conferences with socialist anthem The Red Flag.
And stewards today had to hand out lyric cards beforehand, in case any members didn’t know the words.
Sir Keir had approved the decision to sing God Save the King at the party’s conference in Liverpool, despite concerns it may be ill-received by some members of the party.
To the huge relief of party bosses, no activists heckled or protested in the conference hall.
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Paying tribute to the monarch, the Labour leader today said: “She created a special, personal relationship with all of us. A relationship based on service and devotion to our country.
“Even now, after the mourning period has passed it still feels impossible to imagine a Britain without her.
“Hardly any of us have ever known anything else. For us, the late Queen has always been simply the Queen, the only Queen. Above all else, our Queen.”
Thousands of conference delegates took part in a minute’s silence after Sir Keir’s tribute.
Sir Keir sung “God Save the King” with passion and pride in an effort to prove that Labour is patriotic again.
Just yesterday his predecessor Jeremy Corbyn blasted singing the national anthem at conference as a “very, very odd” idea.
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Mr Corbyn told the BBC: “We don’t as a country routinely go around singing the national anthem at every single event we go to.
“We are not that sort of, what I would call, excessively nationalist.”
Last night and early this morning party bosses underwent a massive whipping operation to ensure the conference hall was chock-a-block for the anthem.
Sir Keir Starmer described the Queen as “this great country’s greatest monarch”[/caption]