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The blob from the blackstuff

The Labour conference opens with discussions on public sector employment and student hardship

The sun is shining on Labour. Just as the Conservative Party conference took place under the leaden skies of a wet Manchester last week, so Labour is meeting amid an unseasonal heatwave.

The polls are also shining on Labour, with the party expected to form the next government and basking in the afterglow of the Rutherglen and Hamilton West by-election result. Accordingly, this is the busiest Labour conference in over a decade, as lobbyists and policy influencers push up the cost of a hotel room in Liverpool to levels not seen since the weeks of Eurovision.

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