You can get it if you really want.

The Conservative Party has today launched a new advertising and recruitment campaign. It is, as far as I can recall, the first time the Party has combined a political campaign with a determined recruitment drive. You can view the ads here
Now for the first time people who might not want to actually join as Members can sign up to become a Friend of the Conservative Party for as little as a pound.

Back to the gym!

Yesterday I spent most of the day switching between dealing with my notarial work and campaigning matters.
I attended a meeting of the Conservative Group of Councillors at Bury Town Hall where the main focus of discussion was on long term plans for land use in the Borough.
Today I have managed to fit in a visit to the gym this morning and I am off to meetings with Conservative Party officials later this morning. I have not manged to fit in a trip to the gym for ages so I took it quite steady. I am determined to be a more regular attender from now on and Sue and I have agreed that the best thing to do is to actually pencil it into our diaries so that we have a plan to work to each week.

North West Conservative Conference

I am now back in Bury after a busy couple of days which began with David Cameron’s visit to Bury. After a private meeting with Councillors we walked over to the Market where we met some of the stall holders and David was able to enjoy some Bury Black Pudding. He even bought one to take home.
Sue and I then drove over to the Reebok Stadium in Bolton where we attended a lunch for Party Members which David Cameron attended. The Conference was then formally opened and David Cameron made the openin speech and answered questions from the floor.

The next session was with Shadow Chancellor George Osborne MP during which my colleague from Bury South Councillor Michelle Wiseman made an impressive speech explaining how the current problems in the housing market were affecting residents in her constituency.

On Friday evening we attended the Conference Dinner where I have to say the food was a great deal better than it was last year. Actor Paul Nicholas attended the Dinner and circulated with guests.

On Saturday the Shadow Foreign Secretary William Hague MP was the main attraction and treated Conference to an excellent and witty speech that was up to his own incredibly high standard. I had the tricky task of being the next speaker after William and I used my speech to outline the developments we have made in Bury North over the past year.

David Cameron in Bury

I am off to welcome the Conservative Party Leader to Bury in a few minutes. David Cameron MP is in the North West to address the North West Conservative Conference which is being held at the Reebok Stadium in Bolton. He is scheduled to visit Bury Town Hall and then proceed to tour our World Famous Markets. I am then off to Bolton to attend the Conference.

Bury Budget

Last evening I attended the Special Meeting of Bury Council which was held to fix the Budget and hence the Council Tax for the year ahead. For the first time in 21 years the Conservative Budget proposals were passed. The result is that Bury’s share of our Council Tax bills will increase by 3.4%. This compares with rises of almost 5% for the last couple of years under Labour and an inflation rate ( according to the Retail Price Index ) of over 4%.
Pensioners not on benefit over 65 will receive a discount of 3.4%. Everyone who wishes will have the option to spread their Council Tax payments over 12 months each year rather than the usual 10 months which will especially help those who are struggling to make ends meet on limited incomes.

Incredibly, Labour proposed an alternative budget that would apparently have frozen the Council Tax with a zero increase. I am sure that the Council Tax payers of Bury will not be taken in by such a move. Labour never managed to freeze the Council Tax when in power for 21 years and indeed they usually increased it by as much as the Government allowed them to. Such a budget even if feasible for this year would mean enormous Council Tax increases and cuts in services in future years.

The Conservative budget is both prudent and sustainable and proves that Bury Council is safe in Conservative hands.

Northern Rock

It seems incredible that in 2008 the Labour Government are choosing to Nationalise a British Bank. The spin from the Government is that this is just a “temporary” measure. As one commentator I heard this morning put it this is rather an odd phrase to use, rather like someone saying they are ” a little bit pregnant”. In any event what we do know is that billions of pounds of taxpayers money has been spent already and billions of pounds more is at risk. I think this issue will seriously undermine any claims the Government had left to economic competence.

Sue and I have been away in Morecambe for the last couple of days visiting our goddaughters. I was pleased that Bury FC won away from home again for the second Saturday running. I went to see the 2-2 draw they hadagainst Wycombe last Tuesday and I thought they battled very well to come back from being 2-0 down at half time. Hopefully this improved run of results under their new Manager will continue.

Mosquitos

Until this morning I thought that mosquitos were rather annoying little flying insects that liked to bite you on holiday. I now know that there is apparently a Teenage Deterrent Device – also called a Mosquito – which emits a high pitched noise which can only be heard by those under the age of 20. I can only surmise that these devices were not around when I was a teenager as I never recall hearing one! The sale of these devices raises interesting questions. On the one hand there is no law preventing their sale. On the other hand should anyone of the right to inflict discomfort on another group in society just because of their age. My instincts are always to think very carefully before any new laws or restrictions are introduced but in this case there seems at the very least a case for the effects of these devices to be investigated.

Last evening I attended a meeting of the Conservative Group on Bury Council where the main topic under discussion was the Budget although no detail was discussed. The detailed discussions have gone on strictly behind closed doors and I can not therefore give any details about what might be revealed at the Budget meeting next week.