Monday, March 05, 2007

Liberal Democrat Spring Conference 2007

I was at the Liberal Democrat Spring Conference in Harrogate this weekend, I had planned to do a number of things while at conference but unfortunately only managed to do a few.

I arrived in Harrogate later then I had originally hoped for which meant that I missed the bulk of the Better Governance Working Group Consultation, however I caught the last section of the session which was lead by Jonathan Marks QC.

Following the consultation session I met with Simon Drage with whom I was training first thing on Saturday and we found that the handouts which we were supposed to use on Saturday had not printed so well, so we then spent the next few hours printing and sorting our handouts. On Friday evening I went out for a meal with the York University Liberal Democrats group, always a pleasure as I now know some of them and always a good chance to meet recent recruits and discuss what they think about the party policies etc.

On Saturday I had a 9.15 start as I was training Winning the youth & student vote with Simon Drage, this was a well attended session once again.

That was followed by training Your local party checklist which I was training with Dave Hodgson of the Membership Department. This was the first time I trained for the membership department and the first time I trained with Dave Hodgson who I now known for a couple of years. This session was not so well attended but that was to be expected as it was running at the same time as the policy debate on Trident. Unfortunately my friend Colin Ross was not called to speak in this debate which was a shame since I had suggested some minor changes to text he had sent me earlier in the week.

After I was done with the training I was on the Liberal Democrat Agents and Organisers Association's stall as an executive member I try to help out at every conference with the stall. Unfortunately this year the exhibition didn’t seem as busy as in the past so I spent most the afternoon reading and talking to people on the neighbouring stands. I did get a visit from Elspeth Campbell who was interested in some of the changes in electoral law coming in at this election. Later Sir Menzies Campbell also came by and he wanted to discuss the development of training.
On Sunday I was hoping to get into the hall to list to Simon Hughes MP, President of the Liberal Democrats and Sir Menzies Campbell MP, Leader of the Liberal Democrats speeches which were scheduled for 9:15 and 11:45 however I felt very lazy and tired so decided to just waste my time doing nothing.

After conference I spent a couple of hours on Sunday afternoon in an Liberal Democrat Agents and Organisers Association Executive meeting which discussed various issues.

We left Harrogate at 4pm but I only got home at approximately 8:30pm since the weather was not the greatest the drive back involved a number of traffic jams and speed restrictions.

All in all not a bad conference as I got to do some training and meet a number friends and people I know who I only get to meet at conference.

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