Trimble to step down from Upper Bann…

In the scramble to get new candidates for the Assembly elections in the new year, David Trimble is stepping down in Upper Bann, leaving veteran representative Sam Gardiner as the party’s one incumbent. Trimble topped the poll by some way in 2003, so they will miss him this time out. Has to be an outside bet for a DUP steal. It could be another space where SF might squeeze out the SDLP too. Although that could depend on whether Brolly’s statement was based on real or just momentarily perceived movement in the Republican base.


  • Dermot one week, Lord Turtle the next. I’d be surprised if Dave relished the thought of waiting until the umpteenth count to be elected, an indignity Faulkner endured post-74.

    By chance late one Saturday night on BBC News 24, I caught Trimble being interviewed on Andrew Neil’s Hard Talk programme and he was keen to remain politically involved although not necessarily in the Assembly. He probably fancies a Shadow Cabinet place and that would be more rewarding than 4 years in the rump of an Assembly party he helped to wreck.

    For all his many faults, Trimble was at least a heavy hitter in UUP terms. So far in 2006, of the 5 UUs who served in the Executive, 2 have stepped down presumably for good, while James Leslie has taken himself off to the Tories proper. They seem to have passed their own judgment on Reg restoring the UUP’s fortunes anytime soon.

  • lib2016

    The Conservative Party in England has made it very clear that they don’t wish to have anything to do with the NI unionists. On the contrary Cameron is very keen on rebranding them after the success of the ‘nasty party’ attack on previous Conservative regimes.

    Tying themselves to a bunch of failures too extreme for UKIP wouldn’t really fit in with that project. They might tell him that they had his phone number but that’s as far as it will go.

  • joeCanuck

    Oh no.
    Please don’t tell me that someone can still draw 3 salaries if their constituents are happy to be shortchanged.

  • darth rumsfeld

    I’ve lived a life that’s fool
    I’ve travelled each and evey by way
    ( except the Garvaghy Road, obviously)
    But more , much more than this
    I did it Tony’s way

    Oh there were times
    I’m sure you knew
    When they said I’d bitten off
    more than I could chew…
    They were right

    Regrets, I’ve had a few
    But then again ermine’s a great consolation
    I did what was told to do
    Without overmuch contemplation…

    I did it ..Faulkner’s way

  • the other one

    hmmm, seems the same lyrics work for Paisley and Trimble

  • George

    I thought Trimble did walk the Garvaghy Road.

  • joeCanuck

    Yes he did George.
    Holding the “doctor’s” hand.
    But only once.

  • mickhall

    Yes he did George.
    Holding the “doctor’s” hand.

    Posted by joeCanuck

    Sounds like the nightie boyos are afoot again.

  • slug

    Will Tyrone Howe replace him?

  • joeCanuck

    You’ve totally lost me there. What are the “nightie boyos”?

  • queen victoria


    a nightie boyo is equivalent to a fudge packer

  • joeCanuck

    Thank you, Your Majesty.
    Google couldn’t tell me what a nightie boyo is but it explained fudge packer quite well.

  • Julian Robertson

    “They seem to have passed their own judgment on Reg restoring the UUP’s fortunes anytime soon. ”


  • Crow

    “I thought Trimble did walk the Garvaghy Road.”
    I don’t believe Trimble and Paisley actually did walk the Garvaghy Road. In 1995 following the two-day standoff, the RUC did a u-turn and allowed marchers (without bands) down Garvaghy, however Paisley and Trimble did not (or were not permitted to) join them. Instead they greeted the marchers back in the town centre. Of course, it was the nature of their reception and perceived triumphal gestures that led to widespread rioting.

  • Now don’t be too cocky, Julian, I don’t see a vast stampede for Dave Cameron’s Blue Labour Party, except perhaps in the Turtle household.

    After all, taking part in the Shadow Cabinet is better than trailing around after your wife in Lisburn’s Tesco every week, wondering why your people were so damn ungrateful.

  • slug


    To be frank your comments are probably at their least interesting when just gratuitous attacks on Trimble and the like. You are better when you stick to political analysis.

  • Butterknife

    The Watchman
    From your bitterness towards Lord Trimble i detect an ex-UUP man who felt betrayed? Am i close…
    Actually the word on the street is many a UUP person that went to the DUP are now deserting that ship for the UKUP or whatever you call Bob’s party. The only people who are staying with the DUP in Lisburn are those who are in love with the MP.

  • slug

    “ctually the word on the street is many a UUP person that went to the DUP are now deserting that ship for the UKUP or whatever you call Bob’s party.”

    I don’t believe this could have any foundation at this stage. Bob lost his group and I think isn’t seen as a credible electoral option outside North Down.

  • Observer


    While one could have reservations about Trimble’s conduct post-1997 he remains an interesting and articulate politican … a figure who many former UUP members, now DUP held and still hold respect for. Indeed he seemed one of the most intelligent politicans sitting on the panel of BBC’s QT from Belfast some weeks ago.

    The DUP ‘movers ‘n’ shakers’ may have had their diffculties with Trimble, but did support the basis of the ‘Trimble project’ – as it has become to be known. Now in the DUP they are doing their best to implement it.

    In fact many former Ulster Unionists, now in the DUP are the people supporting the very thing they shouted about during the reign of Trimble. They are the reason the DUP has moved from ‘Never-Never’ to a position of compromise.

    Robinson and Co. supported the very deal he/they moaned about in 1998. Why do you think he was so supportive of UUP defectors and gave many of them jobs? Why do you think the DUP took up their seats in the Assembly and indeed the Executive?

    Whilst Trimble is right to not seek re-election people like yourself seem eager to trounce on the man at every opportunity.

    Robinson, Donaldson et al, are no better in the respect (or disrespect) in which they showed to Trimble.

    The DUP has shown itself to be only concerned about one thing – themselves … for just look at the St. Andrew’s Agreement and the rules over the First Minister in particular.

    Infact they are worse than the UUP.

    Wouldn’t you agree?

  • Alex

    I did it ..Faulkner’s way

    Posted by darth rumsfeld on Dec 18, 2006 @ 03:29 PM

    With the benifit of hindsight does anyone really believe that Faulkner was wrong

  • darth rumsfeld, you don’t strike me as a supporter of internment alex

  • You’re right, Butterknife, like a lot of ex-UUP people (not all of whom went to the Doc), I do feel betrayed by Trimble. But I’m in a lot of company there.

    Slug, even the odd gratuitous attack has a serious underlying message beneath it. Besides, when it comes to cyber cabbages I’m in competition with Darth.

    Observer, you might be surprised but I don’t deny some of Trimble’s talents. He’s at his best on things like Question Time where his incapabilities matter less. But the fact remains that he helped to wreck the UUP in the same way that he wrecked Vanguard 3 decades earlier. I also am very wary of the DUP and believe they were never as anti-Agreement as they liked to pretend. I pointed out this in an op-ed piece here on Slugger in May 2005, the one that, to my pleasure, got a mention in Roy Garland’s Irish News column.

    Alex, once upon a time you would have described the position you’ve just espoused as “intellectual lundyism”, (a lovely phrase). You may have bought into the whole mandatory power-sharing lark but others have not.

  • Alex. Kane

    Watchman (re your post of 08.59am):

    Thank you for the compliment about “intellectual Lundyism”. However, I am not the person who posts as “Alex”.

    Darth (in case you think it’s me as well):

    I did support internment.

    Best wishes,

    Alex K

  • Apologies, Alex. Easy to get confused when things aren’t as they seem. I once thought the DUP was anti-Agreement and I was wrong there too.