The park which has held its name in honour of former Prime Minister William Gladstone since the nineteenth century could be renamed ‘Diane Abbott Park’ in a review of slavery connections by a labour-led council. Speaking to Dan Wootton on GB News, Ann Widdecombe described the potential change as “peak madness” and added: “I’m beginning to wonder if the entire country has gone mad.”
Mr Gladstone of the Liberal Party held changing views on the slave trade which came from his father who was one of the biggest slave owners in the British Empire.
The former PM opposed the abolition of slavery and suggested gradual emancipation, however, later in his life he stated that “the masses had been right, and the upper classes had been wrong”.
He also described slavery as the “foulest crime” but has been labelled by Brent Council a “historical figure whose views, in association with the slave trade, are inappropriate”.
Mr Wootton noted that the park has been named after Mr Gladstone since the year after his death in 1898 and said: “This is a historic park, this is not overturning a modern decision.”
Suggestions for the new name under plans triggered by Black Lives Matter protests include ‘diversity fields’ and naming the park after Hackney Labour MP Diane Abbott.
Ms Widdecombe stated: “The idea that you remove the name of a historic Prime Minister such as Gladstone and you put in its place somebody whose parliamentary achievements are, put bluntly, negligible and who indeed can’t actually add up…I just wonder what on earth is going on.
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She added: “The history of the human race is that we move, and we develop greater empathy and we develop greater morality.
“These people seem to think you can just rewrite history, the sad thing is the establishment is bowing down to this, it isn’t just the loony left.”
Ms Widdecombe concluded her anti-woke rant by calling the submission of the establishment to the “loony left” as “total rot”.