60 Seconds: Conservative Conference


Down, but not out!


Unlike most delegates, the mood at Conservative Party Conference was somewhat sober.

ConservativeConference1The cons ensus all round was that this year’s event was flat, but not defeatist. Some likened the atmosphere to the conferences in the early 2000’s, with one distinct difference: this time we were the architects of our own downfall.

Nevertheless, the Conservative Party remains resilient, with most members and politicians looking to steady the ship over the next 18 months. Of course, there remains the key question of leadership, but for now ‘the put up and shut up’ attitude will do.

The main challenger, Boris, was kept on an extremely tight leash. After appearing for an hour on Monday morning for a small business breakfast, he was soon locked back in his suite at the Midland Hotel.  His naked ambition, all 4,000 very public words of it, were pushed as far from the public stage as possible.

On housing, the debate was detailed, but monotonous. Despite a significant collection of industry bodies, lobbyists and Councillors in attendance, it was hard to have a really meaningful discussion about the delivery of homes given that there is still no consistent policy narrative or direction from the Government. Let’s hope we can keep a Housing inister for longer than 11 months to drive some through.

ConservativeConference2However, if we were to take an ‘action point’ from fringe discussions, including our own event which saw Sajid Javid speak, it is that better resourcing in planning departments would go some way to mitigating a small number of problems associated with delivery of new homes and positive place making.

CPC2017 was not a conference to write home about but it has taught us one thing: the PM is safe…for now!

Have a good week,


Curtin&Co Associate Director Sarah Wardle is one of our London Conservative Party specialists. Prior to Curtin&Co Sarah worked for two Conservative MP’s and continues to actively campaign for the Conservative Party in West London.

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