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Live blog of David Cameron's speech

Highlights, not verbatim, unless in quotation marks. Main points in pink.


3.25pm: Concluding flourish: "When we look back we will say not that the government made it happen...not that the minister made it happen... but the businesswoman made it happen... the police officer made it happen... the father made it happen... the teacher made it happen. You made it happen.”

3.24pm: Key promise to the British people: "I can look you in the eye and tell you that in a Conservative Britain: If you put in the effort to bring in a wage, you will be better off. If you save money your whole life, you’ll be rewarded. If you start your own business, we’ll be right behind you. If you want to raise a family, we’ll support you. If you’re frightened, we’ll protect you.If you risk your safety to stop a crime, we’ll stand by you. If you risk your life to fight for your country, we will honour you. Ask me what a Conservative government stands for and the answer is this, we will reward those who take responsibility, and care for those who can’t."

3.22pm: A very good question for the Left on the EU: "For the past few decades, something strange has been happening on the left of British politics. People who think of themselves as progressives have fallen in love with an institution that no one elects, no one can remove, and that hasn’t signed off its accounts for over a decade."

3.19pm: Says transparency and decentralisation are key answers to problem of loss of faith in politics.

Picture 71 3.18pm: Talks about importance of green technologies in combating climate change.

3.15pm: Civil liberties commitment: "To be British is to be sceptical of authority and the powers-that-be. That’s why ID cards, 42 days and Labour’s surveillance state are so utterly unacceptable and why we will sweep the whole rotten edifice away."

3.15pm: One line on immigration. It will be limited.

3.14pm: Praises Gove's education policies (as he develops a bit of a cough): "Discipline. Setting by ability. Regular sport. These are all things you find in a private school. Not because the Government tells them to do it, but because it’s what parents want.  Why can’t parents in state schools always get what they want? With us, they will, because our reforms will create more good schools and more school places. Yes, our plans will increase competition – and no, that is not a dirty word. It means that when a good new school opens down the road, the other ones around it will want to improve.  Big government has totally failed in state education and with Michael Gove we will get the radical change we need."

3.11pm: Tribute to Margaret Tebbit is an appropriate nod in Norman's direction.

3.06pm: "We can look the British people in the eye and say this party is the party of the NHS now, today, tomorrow, always."

3.03pm: Cameron sets out Tory ideas on family and welfare. Revisits his responsibility agenda: "We give our children more and more rights, and we trust our teachers less and less.  We’ve got to stop treating children like adults and adults like children. It is about everyone taking responsibility. The more that we as a society do, the less we will need government to do."

3.01pm Goosebumps moment... Standing ovation for attack on Labour's record on poverty: "ho made the poorest poorer? Who left youth unemployment higher? Who made inequality greater? No, not the wicked Tories… you, Labour: you’re the ones that did this to our society. So don’t you dare lecture us about poverty. You have failed and it falls to us, the modern Conservative Party to fight for the poorest who you have let down."

Picture 692.57pm: IDS is back: "Thirty years ago this party won an election fighting against 98 per cent tax rates on the richest. Today I want us to show even more anger about 96 per cent tax rates on the poorest. And in that fight, there’s one person this party can rely on. He’s the man who has dedicated himself to the cause of social justice…and shown great courage in standing up for those least able to stand up for themselves. Iain Duncan Smith. And I am proud to announce today that if we win the election he will be responsible in government for bringing together all our work to help mend the broken society."

2.50pm: Commitment to relink basic state pension and average earnings: "Well let’s be the party that finally makes it happen. Because of the difficult choice we’ve made on the pension age we’ll be able not just to deal with our debt but to raise the basic state pension in line with earnings. Not just for one year, but for every year."

2.47pm: Strong lines on debt burden and they are targeted on trade unions: "Next year, Gordon Brown will spend more money on the interest on our debt than on schools. More than on law and order, more than on child poverty. So I say to the Labour Party and the trades unions just tell me what is compassionate, what is progressive about spending more on debt interest than on helping the poorest children in our country?" Excellent.

2.43pm: Tory message is stronger society and not bigger government: "We are not going to solve our problems with bigger government. We are going to solve our problems with a stronger society. Stronger families.  Stronger communities.  A stronger country. All by rebuilding responsibility."

Picture 68 2.41pm: We'll keep some Labour things. "Devolution; the minimum wage; civil partnerships, these are good things that we will we keep."

2.40pm: Family, community and country are in my DNA, says Tory leader. He repeats his favourite soundbite: "I have some simple beliefs.That there is such a thing as society, it’s just not the same thing as the state. That there is a ‘we’ in politics, and not just a ‘me.’"

2.39pm: David Cameron addresses the loss of his son, Ivan: "For me and Samantha this year will only ever mean one thing. When such a big part of your life suddenly ends nothing else - nothing outside - matters.  It’s like the world has stopped turning and the clocks have stopped ticking. And as they slowly start again, weeks later, you ask yourself all over again: do I really want to do this? You think about what you really believe and what sustains you. I know what sustains me the most.  She is sitting right there and I’m incredibly proud to call her my wife."

2.38pm: Cameron refers to Eric Pickles as his "chum" :-)

2.36pm: Sustained applause for praise of British troops in Afghanistan. 30 seconds I reckon.

2.35pm: "My national security council, with the key ministers and defence chiefs, will sit from day one of a new government, as a war cabinet. We need a strategy that is credible, and do-able.  We are not in Afghanistan to deliver the perfect society.  We are there to stop the re-establishment of terrorist training camps."

2.34pm: First topic addressed by Cameron is Afghanistan. He appears to give Liam Fox reassurance that he will stay in post: |"Instead of a revolving door at the Ministry of Defence with a second rate substitute in charge, we need a politician from the front rank, and in Liam Fox we have one."

2.31pm: "I want to get straight to the point. We all know how bad things are, massive debt, social breakdown, political disenchantment. But what I want to talk about today is how good things could be." Times ahead will be tough. We will have to tear down Labour's bureaucracy. There is a steep climb ahead but the view from the summit will be worth it.

2.30pm: Cameron is on stage.

2.28pm: Second video reviewing the highlights of David Cameron's four years as Tory leader.

Picture 652.24pm: Video from Bono paying tribute to Tory commitment to keep spending aid money.

2.22pm: Shadow cabinet enter hall - introduced by William Hague - to cheering and applause.

2.15pm: Shadow cabinet still to enter hall. This is going to be a late start.

2.10pm: James Kirkup has Tweeted that IDS is to return:

Picture 59 We'll get going at about 2pm and the speech starts at about 2.15pm.

Tim Montgomerie


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