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South's delegates head to Lib Dem conference

Lib Dem party conference takes place this weekend Photo:

It's a long journey from the south of England to Scotland. A handful of Lib Dems from our region arrived here yesterday, including the former MP for Romsey Sandra Gidley. She's always been sceptical about the coalition and the direction the party's taken over the past few years.

Those arriving early at least have the chance to enjoy some fine weather. After the drizzle of yesterday, it'll be sunny for Nick Clegg's arrival today. But tomorrow, we're being warned about severe storms.

Will it be a stormy week for the party leadership? Lord Oakeshott from the Isle of Wight has made his usual pre-conference remarks about the party being better off with a different leader.

Nick Clegg certainly has his critics here, but on the whole the party's remained remarkably united since 2010.

They're looking ahead to next spring's local and Euro elections, knowing they have a mountain to climb, especially if UKIP continue to do well. As for the general election in 2015, there is not much talk here of the party making gains: they will be trying to hold on to what they have, which means defending some pretty small majorities in places like Eastbourne and Mid Dorset and North Poole.

It will be a fascinating fight in large parts of our region where the battleground is between Conservatives and Lib Dems. And that's why they'll spend the week here in Glasgow talking about the differences between the coalition partners - mapping out the election campaign in 20 months' time.

It will be a fascinating campaign - and a very long one. The 2015 general election starts here in Glasgow this weekend.