Baroness Warsi is Conservative Party Chairman. Follow her on Twitter.
Political summers are traditionally sleepy, but there’s a buzz in the air at party headquarters and in the regions. It surrounds the forthcoming election of Police and Crime Commissioners and we are throwing everything we’ve got at the challenge. November 15 is the big day – the day when voters in 41 police areas outside London will, for the first time, have the chance to decide how their police forces are run by choosing who leads them.
It’s shaping up to be a great campaign. I’ve assigned a press officer and a member of the research department to each police area and our campaign teams are working hard on the ground. We have some excellent candidates who are already working their patches by finding out local priorities, speaking to residents and raising awareness about these elections. They include former army officers, teachers, councillors and police officers – people who know they can make a difference in an area which concerns most people: crime and policing.
Things kicked off formally on July 19 with our training day, as journalists, candidates, party officials and ministers piled into CCHQ to kick off the campaign. My tour began shortly afterwards, during which I’ve launched a ‘No Cold Calling’ campaign in Pendle, backed York’s ‘Think, Don’t Swim’ initiative, and been door-knocking, leafleting and pounding the streets with our truly inspirational candidates. I am keeping up that momentum across the regions and look forward to being in Humberside soon for the next leg of my tour. Meanwhile, policing minister Nick Herbert and Theresa May have been out on the campaign trail too, making the case for Conservative PCCs. Nick wrote about the subject for ConHome last week.