Monday 6 July 2009

Conservative rural re-action

Lobbydog was unimpressed with the Conservative’s Rural Action campaign which the party “launched” today.

Rural Action was touted as an “agenda for rural communities”. In truth it was largely made up of previously announced proposals collected in a document with “rural” written on the front.

It seemed particularly meagre as Gordon Brown was given such an ear-bashing by the Tories for wrapping up old policies in new packaging with the Building Britain’s Future plan last week.

In Rural Action the Tories said they’d help save village schools by abolishing current limits on surplus places. But this was a wider policy David Cameron and Michael Gove proposed as far back as 18 months ago.

Under Rural Action the party would also let communities decide where new developments went through Local Housing Trusts, something Grant Schapps announced in April.

Then there was the document’s promise to help small firms with tax relief – one of Caroline Spelman’s announcements from March.

They would’ve been better off highlighting the benefit of their policies to rural areas when they were first announced – and targeting the relevant rural media outlets to hammer the point home.

Instead they’re trying to convince rural lobby groups that they’re important because they have their very own “agenda” document, full of polices announced months ago for everyone else.

Shadow rural affairs minister Jim Paice admitted the Tories don’t have the rural vote sewn up yet – if they want it they need to do better than this.


Jive5 said...

The Tories are such hypocrites - how dare they go around saying Labour has run out of ideas when this is the sh*te they come out with. Yes, I'm a Labour supporter - but that doesn't make this any less true.

Scottish Unionist said...
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