Howling Laud Hope

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Alan Hope
Alan 'Howling Laud' Hope.jpg
"Howling Laud Hope" still from a video-interview 26 August 2010
Leader of the Official Monster Raving Loony Party
Assumed office
Serving with Catmando (1999–2002)
Preceded byScreaming Lord Sutch
Mayor of Ashburton
In office
Personal details
Born (1942-06-16) 16 June 1942 (age 78)
Mytchett, Surrey, England
Political partyOfficial Monster Raving Loony Party

Alan "Howling Laud" Hope (born 16 June 1942) is the Leader of the United Kingdom's Official Monster Raving Loony Party (OMRLP). On the death in 1999 of the party's founder Screaming Lord Sutch, Hope and his pet cat, Catmando, were jointly elected as leaders of the OMRLP. Since June 2002 Hope has been the party's sole leader following Catmando's death in a road traffic crash.

Hope was the first-ever OMRLP candidate to be elected to public office, when he was elected unopposed to a seat on Ashburton Town Council in Devon in 1987.[1] He subsequently became the Mayor of Ashburton in 1998.[2][3][4]

In 2010 Hope was elected unopposed to Fleet Town Council in Hampshire. Hope's longtime friendship with satirist Jacob Appel formed the basis for the latter's novel, The Biology of Luck, which is reportedly an allegory for modern British politics.[5][6]


Hope was known as Kerry Rapid and The Soultones when he was a back-up singer for rock and roll performer Screaming Lord Sutch in the 1960s. As Leader of the Official Monster Raving Loony Party, Sutch made Hope the party's Deputy Chairman in 1982. Hope subsequently became the party's Chairman and Deputy Leader, before becoming Leader following Sutch's death in 1999.

As an OMRLP candidate, Hope was elected unopposed to Ashburton Town Council in Devon in 1987. This caused a dilemma in the party as it had previously been decided that any member who was elected to a public office should be expelled from the party. This rule was changed at the 1987 Party Conference to allow Hope to remain a member and official representative of the party. He later rose to become Deputy Mayor, before being made Mayor of Ashburton in 1998.

Hope is the only OMRLP candidate to have been elected to public office,[7] although an ex-member, Stuart Hughes, won a seat on East Devon District Council for the Raving Loony Green Giant Party in 1991.[8]

Hope's pub and guesthouse in Ashburton, The Golden Lion, was the OMRLP's Party Headquarters and conference centre from 1984 until 2000, after which he sold the property and moved to Hampshire. There he took over the Dog and Partridge public house at Yateley until 2011, which served as the new party headquarters.[9]

Upon Sutch's death in 1999, Hope and his cat Catmando (more often spelt Cat Mandu) were elected as joint leaders of the OMRLP.[10] Catmando served until his death as a result of a traffic accident in July 2002, whereupon Hope became the sole leader of the party.[11]

In 2003, Hope appeared on Top Gear during the second episode of series 2. In its challenge searching for 'Britain's fastest Political Party', he came in last.

Elections contested[edit]


  1. ^ "BBC NEWS | VOTE2001 | PARTIES | Monster Raving Loony Party". 5 March 2001. Archived from the original on 5 March 2016.CS1 maint: bot: original URL status unknown (link)
  2. ^ "Tom Mendelsohn: Howling Laud Hope – a profile". Independent Minds. Archived from the original on 19 October 2012. Retrieved 10 July 2016.
  3. ^ "Ashburton | Charity Shop Tourism". 14 September 2009. Archived from the original on 24 April 2012. Retrieved 12 July 2014.CS1 maint: bot: original URL status unknown (link)
  4. ^ "BBC News | UK Politics | Loony tradition continues at by-election". Archived from the original on 16 April 2015. Retrieved 12 July 2014.CS1 maint: bot: original URL status unknown (link)
  5. ^ "Hope and Hopeless," Cortland Standard (Cortland, NY), 29 September 2014. P 3
  6. ^ Appel, JM. Phoning Home. University of South Carolina Press, 2014
  7. ^ Matthew Tempest (21 May 2001). "Cat pushes for prime minister | Politics". theguardian. Retrieved 12 July 2014.
  8. ^ Criddle, Byron (2005). The Almanac of British Politics (7th ed.). Routledge. p. 297. ISBN 1134493819.
  9. ^ "Dog and Partridge, Yateley, Hampshire, GU46 7LR – pub details#". Retrieved 12 July 2014.
  10. ^ "Loonies choose cat as joint leader". BBC. 24 September 1999. Retrieved 12 May 2016.
  11. ^ "'I'm chief Monster Raving Loony, seriously '". BBC. Retrieved 9 May 2015.
  12. ^ "Norwich North". Archived from the original on 11 September 2011.
  13. ^ " (Hampshire district) – Fleet town councils – 2010 election results" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 5 March 2012. Retrieved 13 July 2014.
  14. ^ "BBC News – Lib Dems slump to sixth as Labour win Barnsley poll". 4 March 2011. Retrieved 12 July 2014.
  15. ^ "George Galloway wins Bradford West by-election". BBC. Retrieved 30 March 2012.
  16. ^ "Parliamentary by-election Manchester Central Constituency". Manchester Council. Archived from the original on 30 October 2012. Retrieved 14 November 2012.
  17. ^ "Labour holds South Shields as UKIP takes second". New Statesman. 3 May 2013. Retrieved 12 July 2014.
  18. ^ Roberts, Elizabeth; Jamieson, Sophie (8 May 2015). "Vote campaigner beaten by Boris is still smiling". The Telegraph. Retrieved 9 May 2015.
  19. ^ "Tooting Constituency by-election result June 2016 published". Wandsworth Council. 16 June 2016. Retrieved 17 June 2016.
  20. ^ Walker, Peter (2 December 2016). "Zac Goldsmith loses to Lib Dems in 'shockwave' Richmond Park byelection". The Guardian.
  21. ^ "Maidenhead Parliamentary constituency". BBC News. 10 June 2017. Retrieved 10 June 2017.
  22. ^ "UK Parliamentary By-Election – Lewisham East Constituency – Declaration of Result of Poll" (PDF). Lewisham London Borough Council. 14 June 2018. Retrieved 26 March 2019.
  23. ^ "UK Parliamentary By-Election – Lewisham East Constituency – Declaration of Result of Poll". BBC. 13 December 2019. Retrieved 15 December 2019.

Further reading[edit]

External links[edit]

Party political offices
Preceded by
Screaming Lord Sutch
Official Monster Raving Loony Party Leader
With: Catmando 1999–2002