Sunday, October 01, 2006

Blogging from Bournemouth1 - Conference chaos!

Francis Maude pictured in the conference center delivering his speech
(earlier in the day before I spoke to him about conference passes!).

These days I am beginning to feel at bit of a veteran when I attend the Conservative Party conference- I went to the first 15 years ago. Over that time I have seen attendances fluctuate considerably and the trade exhibitors contract to almost nothing (1997/98/99) and upwards again (last year, this year apparently!). The reason I write this is that I still (at the END of day one), have not received my conference pass. This despite having paid £200 and having now submitted two applications as CCO Conferences Ltd claim to have lost the first one! For the official line read
The Conference office are blaming the Police, the police say they have processed the applications. Iain writes at
and Guido at
I happened to be leaving Bournemouth at 10.30 this evening with Gavin Dick when I bumped into Francis Maude in the car park of the Pavilions. He appeared genuinely sympathetic and told me that he had been told that the police would clear their backlog this-evening and that the Party would have all but the ‘problematic’ passes processed by the morning.
We shall see…
My guess is that conference numbers are partly up due to new members but also because of a huge increase in the numbers of corporate exhibitors and visitors. The bad news is that most of them will be going down Monday morning- I predict chaos. I reckon they have got over 1000 still to do. I hope I’m wrong as some of my friends spent four hours queuing today- not something I think I could do- oh yes and they still haven’t got a pass!!!


Blogger Jeremy Moulton said...

It was quite a strange day! Loads of people have been stuck queuing, including MPs and MEPs. I hope everything gets sorted this morning. You missed some excellent speaches. The highlight for me was Senator McCain. He wasn't the best orator but his message was absolutely spot on. I will post a post on my blog about it. Hague and Cameron were really good too. Also I coming round to the new logo! Bournemouth is festooned with the tree symbol! The background in main stage in the BIC has a sorted of foresty theme. It's actually quite soothing!

10:59 am  
Anonymous Tom Flynn said...

The same happened to me at our Conference in Manchester last week. I had to re-apply and finally got in on Monday night. Maybe there is a blacklist for people who have been seen in your pub...

3:46 pm  
Blogger Matt Dean said...

Good to hear from you Tom, hope all is well.
If there isn't a blacklist...there probably should be!

1:05 pm  
Blogger tapestry said...

Maude's face looks red and it bloody well shoud be. He's caused chaos at the Conferecne and chaos in the Red Top press for not resigning his pornographic chairmanship of Jubilee Investment Trust, which has some ahem unethical interests. Maude's totally irresponsible. A child would know that being Chairman of the Conservative Party would require a clean sheet of other interests. How can he possibly maintain his position of moral custodiam of the A List and the Conference when he cannot even wipe his own arse.

And what a cock-up he makes of it all.

2:57 pm  

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