I’ve just attended an off-camera briefing at CCHQ (the Pankhurst Room) about the Party Conference. Here are the main points:
Accreditation: All passes (except very late applications) have been cleared by the Lancashire Constabulary. Phew. More than 8,500 passes have been issued – the best attendance for five years.
Slogan: "It’s time for change" is the main Conference message. The message – Gordon Brown is good at playing political games but has no vision for the country.
Policy reviews: At this Conference many policy group recommendations will be adopted or rejected. Charges for supermarket parking has already been binned.
Opening day: Highlights on Sunday will be opening speech from William Hague (expect a demolition of Gordon Brown) and Boris Johnson.
Tories are ready for an Election: £10m in warchest. 200 candidates in key seats selected. Manifesto drafted. If an election is called next week the broadcasters have assured CCHQ that the Conference will receive full coverage – to balance the coverage already given to Labour and the LibDems.
Lady Thatcher: Won’t be attending (and hasn’t for a number of years).
Social action: As with last year, there will be a social action project. Some derelict land will be reclaimed.