This book is a lovely tribute to some of the real heroes of the labour movement - comrades who seek no national recognition or have no ambition to be leader of a ruling Labour council but strive to advance the cause in their own community knowing that they have little or no chance of ever being part of a majority group on the local council or to have a socialist MP.
Such is the lot of socialists in Westmorland. But it has never dimmed their enthusiasm or belief and they remain an example.
The turn of the 20th century saw the local labour movement led by Christian socialists largely based on the Unitarian church in Kendal and it was able to attract speakers such as Tom Mann and Keir Hardie.
This was followed by the formation of a trades council and the election of the first Labour councillor in 1903. The Independent Labour Party was also strongly represented as were the Quakers and the area had an above average number of conscientious objectors in WWI.
The first general election was fought in 1924 and Labour gained nearly 30 per cent of the vote in a straight fight with the Tories. In 1935 the first and to date the only woman candidate was selected.
Then in 1945 a Wing Commander, the initial choice as parliamentary candidate, declared that "straightforward socialism was the basis of the labour movement." Those were the days.
Since then Westmorland Labour Party has had to struggle with tactical voting among the electorate, boundary reviews which have meant the end of a constituency coterminous with the county boundary and the curse of Blair which has decimated the Labour Party nationally too. But still they battle on.
My only criticism is that to give a full picture of the labour movement in Westmorland, the book could have included more details of the struggles of the trade unions and the Communist Party locally.
That said, the author suffered from the usual problem faced when trying to write a history of working-class people, as we are so bad at preserving it.
But the abiding impression is of a warm and enlightening story of genuine and committed socialists, trying to improve the lot of local communities.