News from Bury Council Conservatives Group today as last night Councillor James Daly was elected as Leader of the Opposition on Bury Council. A couple of weeks ago the Leader for the past five years Councillor Iain Gartside surprised me at least when he announced he was standing down as Leader. Iain has recently moved to a new job and felt it was the right time to step down. He will continue to serve the residents of Tottington Ward. Councillor Daly was previously Deputy Leader and his position as deputy Leader has now been filled by Elton Ward Councillor Mike Hankey. I wish them both well in their new roles.
Crikey, I can’t believe it is a week since I was driving back from Brighton.
I have had a very busy few days with campaigning events, campaign planning meetings and several AGM’s. By a strange quirk of the diary I have had cause to attend five different Annual General meetings in the last few days. First up was the Annual Meeting of Bury Conservatives which we held down in Prestwich this year. All the officers were re-elected and the meeting was concluded with two speeches from myself and then my colleague Councillor Michelle Wiseman the Candidate for Bury South.
On Tuesday evening I attended the Annual General Meeting of Tottington St.John’s Cricket Club where I was re-elected as President. It is very enjoyable to attend non-political meetings and there is so much going on at the Cricket Club at the moment not least of which was the change of the name of the Club to Tottington Sports Club to reflect the fact that the club now embraces a Ladies RoundersTeam. Sensibly, in my view, the cricket team will continue to be known as Tottington St. John’s.
On Wednesday I was invited to attend the Annual General Meeting of the Bury North Conservative Ladies Committee. The Ladies Committee do an excellent job organising various fundraising events throughout the year which go towards paying for the running costs of the Association.
Yesterday, I was asked, in my capacity as President, to Chair the Annual General Meeting of the North West Regions Conservatives at Work organisation. The meeting was held in Morecambe and fortuitously was on the same day as the Morecambe and Lunesdale Conservative Association’s AGM so as I was up there anyway I was able to call in. Although it is ten years since I was their Candidate there are still many people who remember me (although I am pleased to say there were also several new faces who I did not recognise!).
Phew! It has been a very busy last 36 hours. I attended the final day of the Conservatives’ Spring Forum in Brighton yesterday and was in the Hall to watch and listen to David Cameron’s unscripted speech which was very impressive. Incidentally, it is noticeable how many front line politicians are now able (and willing) to make speeches without notes these days. We had a good run back up from the South coast without hitting any traffic jams.
Today, I have been over to Sheffield where among other things I visited my father and installed his wireless broadband connection. Back to Bury and then I attended the Annual General Meeting of Bury Conservatives which was held in Prestwich this year. Fortunately the meeting was not too protracted as I then had to attend a meeting of the Church Officers at St. Anne’s back in Tottington. Tomorrow I am back on the campaign trail with a day of leafletting and canvassing.
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.