My personal input into the Oldham East & Saddleworth campaign was limited to phone canvassing as my legs are not yet recovered enough from my neurological illness in 2009 for me to do doorstep campaigning - a goal set with my physios is to be able to walk and write on a clipboard at the same time, hopefully by this May's elections.
However, the phoning was enough to tell me that the constituency is still as tricky a one for Labour as its predecessor, Littleborough & Saddleworth, was when I was up there for the 1995 by-election. It just isn't for the main part natural Labour territory and has pockets of extremely passionate and tribal Lib Dem support which are deep-rooted in a way uncommon outside the far South West.
In this context for Debbie Abrahams to get a majority higher than we had in the seat in the 1997 landslide is a triumph and a massive tribute to the organisational skills of Labour's North West and national staff and volunteer activists, huge numbers of whom have been out in appalling weather conditions.
It's a victory of immense tactical significance as it provides momentum as we head towards the May polls in Scotland, Wales and local councils.
But we need to be careful to stay sober about its wider strategic significance.
I don't see this as a big way marker on the route to victory like Dudley West or Wirral South were in the '90s. OE&S is too idiosyncratic a seat - the next General Election will be won in Con vs Lab marginals and OE&S is a rare Lab vs LD fight (though if Cameron hadn't switched off his machine to help Clegg it should have been a three-way marginal).
Cameron's vote slump (with apparent Tory switchers direct to Labour, as well as to the LDs and UKIP) provides a political problem for him as his own rightwingers will view him as having betrayed grassroots campaigners in order to try to help Clegg.
The willingness of Tories to vote tactically for the LDs, and of the two parties to collude on where they put up a fight, is extremely worrying from a Labour point-of-view.
We need to be careful not to let euphoria at one good win stop us from making the comprehensive policy and strategy review that is the appropriate response to getting thumped to a 29% defeat in the General Election.
And we need to note that the LDs were still competitive in a target seat for them even when bumping along at 7-9% nationally - they are not a wholly dead parrot yet.
This is the end of the beginning not the beginning of the end.