Paddy Ashdown

Lord Ashdown is a British politician and diplomat, currently Chair of the Liberal Democrats 2015 General Election Team

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Collected Poems by John Donne, book of a lifetime: The "greatest poet" still takes Paddy Ashdown's breath away

Since the age of 16, I have had a copy of the complete poems of John Donne somewhere close at hand. For me, that was a watershed year. I had not been a good student – at best strugglingly average, to the despair of my father. In truth the classroom interested me far less at this age than the rugby pitch, the athletics field and the girls at the local Bedford high school.

Elections 2014: Lib Dems’ biggest challenge is not to lose our heads - Lord Ashdown

“I bring you nought for your comfort,
Yea, nought for your desire.
Save that the sky grows darker yet
And the sea rises higher.”

I suspect that many Lib Dems waking on Monday morning will identify with King Alfred’s speech to his ragged army in G.K Chesterton’s epic “The Ballad of the White Horse”.

41 per cent of Lib Dem activists are dissatisfied with Nick Clegg's performance as party leader

Lib Dems’ biggest challenge is not to lose our heads

We have a proud record of achievement to take to the electorate at the next general election

UN Climate Conference: Fighting climate change is moral, vital, and in our own interests

Amid the political horse trading, politicians ignore climate change at their peril

Paddy Ashdown: We need a Tobin tax – but not to fill black holes

It is not just the regulatory benefits that are clear. The money raised could be used to help millions of children

Podium: Racism festering on my doorstep

Paddy Ashdown

Podium: Paddy Ashdown - Britain has five political parties

From a lecture to the Royal Society of Arts on proportional representat ion given by the leader of the Liberal Democrats

Unremembered acts of kindness

Monday Book; ANTI-CATHOLICISM IN NORTHERN IRELAND 1600-1998: THE MOTE AND THE BEAM BY JOHN D BREWER WITH GARETH I HIGGINS, MACMILLAN PRESS, pounds 16.99

We cannot allow the Serbs to attempt a `final solution'

Now we must think the unthinkable and consider the least worst option of sending the troops in

We can only achieve our aims by co-operating with Labour

We have no intention of allowing ourselves to be swallowed by Labour - we are too indigestible

Day In a Page

Super Mario crushes the Messi dream as Germany win the 2014 World Cup in Brazil

Super Mario crushes the Messi dream

Germany win the 2014 World Cup in Brazil
Saharan remains may be evidence of the first race war, 13,000 years ago

The first race war, 13,000 years ago?

Saharan remains may be evidence of oldest large-scale armed conflict
Scientists find early warning system for Alzheimer’s

Scientists find early warning system for Alzheimer’s

Researchers hope eye tests can spot ‘biomarkers’ of the disease
Sex, controversy and schoolgirl schtick

Meet Japan's AKB48

Pop, sex and schoolgirl schtick make for controversial success
In pictures: Breathtaking results of this weekend's 'supermoon'

Weekend's 'supermoon' in pictures

The moon appeared bigger and brighter at the weekend
Iraq crisis: How Saudi Arabia helped Isis take over the north of the country

How Saudi Arabia helped Isis take over northern Iraq

A speech by an ex-MI6 boss hints at a plan going back over a decade. In some areas, being Shia is akin to being a Jew in Nazi Germany, says Patrick Cockburn
The evolution of Andy Serkis: First Gollum, then King Kong - now the actor is swinging through the trees in Dawn of the Planet of the Apes

The evolution of Andy Serkis

First Gollum, then King Kong - now the actor is swinging through the trees in Dawn of the Planet of the Apes
You thought 'Benefits Street' was controversial: Follow-up documentary 'Immigrant Street' has got locals worried

You thought 'Benefits Street' was controversial...

Follow-up documentary 'Immigrant Street' has got locals worried
Refugee children from Central America let down by Washington's high ideals

Refugee children let down by Washington's high ideals

Democrats and Republicans refuse to set aside their differences to cope with the influx of desperate Central Americas, says Rupert Cornwell
Children's books are too white, says Laureate

Children's books are too white, says Laureate

Malorie Blackman appeals for a better ethnic mix of authors and characters and the illustrator Quentin Blake comes to the rescue
Blackest is the new black: Scientists have developed a material so dark that you can't see it...

Blackest is the new black

Scientists have developed a material so dark that you can't see it...
Matthew Barzun: America's diplomatic dude

Matthew Barzun: America's diplomatic dude

The US Ambassador to London holds 'jeans and beer' gigs at his official residence – it's all part of the job, he tells Chris Green
Meet the Quantified Selfers: From heart rates to happiness, there is little this fast-growing, self-tracking community won't monitor

Meet the 'Quantified Selfers'

From heart rates to happiness, there is little this fast-growing, self-tracking community won't monitor
Madani Younis: Five-star reviews are just the opening act for British theatre's first non-white artistic director

Five-star reviews are just the opening act for British theatre's first non-white artistic director

Madani Younis wants the neighbourhood to follow his work as closely as his audiences do
Mrs Brown and her boys: are they having a laugh?

Mrs Brown and her boys: are they having a laugh?

When it comes to national stereotyping, the Irish – among others – know it can pay to play up to outsiders' expectations, says DJ Taylor