Conservative Diary

Conservative movement

5 Nov 2007 22:26:08

Law training

"Are you an ambitious law student or graduate?

Do you want to build a successful career as a solicitor or barrister?

With training contracts, tenancies and legal jobs harder and harder to come by, do you want to know how to get ahead in the legal profession?

On Saturday, 17 November 2007, the Young Britons' Foundation is hosting its inaugural Legal Profession Career Development Workshop. This must-attend event is being held from 11am to 3pm on Saturday, 17
November 2007 at the offices of Clifford Chance, in the heart of Canary Wharf.

Those attending the YBF Legal Profession Career Development Workshop will hear at first-hand from a senior Queen's Counsel, a partner in a City law firm, a junior barrister and a recruitment specialist.

All of the speakers will provide valuable tips and insights into how to progress in the law and how to secure the best jobs in the legal profession.

Attendance at this exclusive event is only possible through the Young Britons' Foundation.

If, as an aspiring lawyer, you wish to attend this essential event, please send a cheque for £10 made payable to "Young Britons' Foundation" to Donal Blaney, Chief Executive, Young Britons' Foundation, 18 Doughty Street, London WC1N 2PL or email [email protected]."

30 Oct 2007 14:48:46

Introducing CF Countryside

Cf_countryside_2 The latest CF bulletin includes a link to a new organisation - CF Countryside:

"Members of Conservative Future Countryside are encouraged and supported to provide time to champion Pro-Countryside Conservative Candidates (urban and rural).  In addition between elections CFC provides a network of contacts enabling young people to get involved in contributing to the daily and future life of their communities often under threat."

It looks basically like an official alliance between CF and the Conservative Rural Action Group. It's a good initiative, and encouraging to see CF getting outside the "Party box" a little. I believe single issue campaigning is increasingly the way party politics will go particularly with the advent of the internet.

What's interesting about this though is that CF as has effectively endorsed CRAG as a corporate policy. This isn't controversial as CRAG and the Party's agricultural team are in practice six of one and half a dozen of the other ( it was launched by Peter Ainsworth five years ago and is run by James Paice). But could or should we see more alliances with the Party's affiliated groups?

We probably won't see more CF versions of groups as they usually have their own youth element if they want one but there are lots of ways of promoting involvement in them - e.g. Mark Clarke's innovation of allocating some National Convention places to such groups.

I've pasted the rest of this month's bulletin below, which includes details of the CF Countryside launch event...

Continue reading "Introducing CF Countryside" »

5 Sep 2007 12:30:24

IYDU conference in Estonia

5th - 9th December in Tallinn, land of the flat tax.

It's always worth meeting people from sister parties in other countries, you can learn a lot from how they do things. Last year's Council Meeting was in London so we're lucky to have it relatively close by this year as well so best to make the most of it. EasyJet have some good rates from London.

Details here, registration form here.

14 Mar 2007 09:10:00

Two conservative movement training opportunities

Last year saw the first Freedom Week, a four-day course aiming to equip young people with "the knowledge, the confidence, and the network to defend freedom". This year it will again take place at Sidney Sussex College, Cambridge University, July 16th - 20th . The organiser writes:

"The theory and practice of a free society based on individual liberty and the free market are rarely taught in our education system and are seldom portrayed in a positive light by the media. From childhood, we are taught that pursuing one's own interest and trying to achieve are detrimental to society as a whole; and that intervention by the state to alleviate perceived injustices is both desirable and effective. And yet, history shows us otherwise.  Societies where individual freedoms are guaranteed thrive, whereas collectivist systems lead to misery."

I can't say I entirely agree with the second sentence but the first sums up the course's necessity, and good things were said about it last year. Attendance, food and accommodation are all free for participating students but they have to guarantee their presence at all of the lectures, which are taken by a number of distinguished academics in the field.


Following on from their successful Television Techniques Training Workshop in February, the Young Britons' Foundation has scheduled another workshop for next Thursday (22nd March). As before, the workshop will be limited to 6 attendees so as to maximise time in front of the camera and interaction with lecturers. More information on the workshop and how to apply for a place can be found here.

Both organisations are filling important niches and are entirely funded by the generosity of their supporters - this year's Freedom Week still needs a substantial amount of money to go ahead and YBF want to continue to hold regular workshops.

If you would like to contribute to the development of either organisation email [email protected] or [email protected], respectively.

13 Mar 2007 08:16:28

Charlie Groome: Three Cheers for the Young Britons' Foundation Television Techniques Workshop

Ybf_18dsAs an aspiring voice in the world of politics I was keen to get the chance to learn some of the tricks of the trade and so was pleased to hear I'd got a place on the Young Britons' Foundation's first Television Techniques Training Workshop of the year. Arriving promptly at 18 Doughty Street for 9am, I was immediately whisked away for a baptism of fire in 'Vox Pops'.

I'd experienced this once before in my life, aged 16, having come back from drinks with some school friends in central Manchester when a Sky News television crew stopped me in my tracks to ask what my views on underage drinking were. As you might imagine, I floundered and at 9am, without any form of caffeination whatsoever, I once again stumbled. Alas, after a friendly coffee break that gave us the chance to meet each other, six in total, we were engaged in a series of insightful lectures into precisely what makes good television presentation and why it is necessary at all.

Continue reading "Charlie Groome: Three Cheers for the Young Britons' Foundation Television Techniques Workshop" »

19 Feb 2007 09:40:47

Mark Clarke: Opportunities to study America's conservative movement

Clarke_mark Mark Clarke is Chairman of Conservative Future.  He was recently selected for Tooting.

Conservative Future and the Young Britons Foundation are today announcing an exciting collaboration to give CF members access to the political opportunities available in the US. Whilst the US conservative movement has its own issues which differ from those in the UK, the level of political sophistication, whether in campaigning techniques, training, internet understanding or communications ability is far more advanced than here in the UK. We want to give CF members an opportunity to learn these techniques and experience American political life. We also hope that this will strengthen the links between our two Conservative movements and between our two great nations.

We have together developed relationships with a wide range of organisations who are willing to take UK CF members for internships for varying lengths of time. Some of these may be paid, some will pay flights, some will offer accommodation. All will offer an exceptional and life changing experience.

The Young Briton's Foundation have kindly offered to manage this process.  Together, CF and YBF will make the initial selection and recommendations to our friends across the Atlantic. Detailed application details can be found on the YBF site. In order for us to place people with organisations with which they will be a strong cultural fit we also include a questionnaire to understand people's current politics. This is not pie in the sky. We already have sent over informally CF members to the US as we have pulled together the details of this plan for general consumption.

CF is grateful to YBF for its help here. YBF has for many years trained Conservative activists in advanced political techniques. I myself hugely benefited from this training, as have 100s of other CF members. More recently, YBF has provided personal coaching to me in my current role and organised a trip for me to the US at which we jointly created this programme.

This is also a sign that CF is embracing the full conservative movement - as partners not rivals.

5 Feb 2007 12:10:00

Coming soon: Blue Shark TV

Alex Crowley, Andrew Young and Caroline Hunt have been working on a interesting project, "Blue Shark TV".

Andrew and Caroline were CF Exec members from last year, and in some ways this project seems to be an independent successor to the axed CFTV and CFRadio initiatives - it has retained the "Friday night live-ish" show for example. It is however very much seperate from Conservative Future. Alex, who is on the Campaigns HQ show of 18 Doughty Street tonight, told CF Diary that:

"Blue Shark Tv is an internet broadcasting project aimed at opening up the world of politics and current affairs to young people, and, with no party political considerations to worry about there is considerably more freedom for self-expression and good humour. The content will be a mix of radio and tv podcasts, blogs and users' videos."

Blue Shark TV isn't intended to just be video-based, but will have audio, art and writing.  It's encouraging to see another independent youth-based conservative-inclined initiative starting out. I do think they may be able to carve a niche between CF Diary (because of its broader political focus and use of multimedia) and 18 Doughty Street (by targeting young people exclusively) - so good luck to them for their impending launch!

26 Jan 2007 12:23:21

Shane Greer appointed Executive Director of Young Britons' Foundation

Ybflogo2004 The Young Britons' Foundation, a non-partisan not-for-profit organisation that identifies, recruits, trains and places conservative activists in politics, the media, public affairs and the civil service, has announced the appointment of Shane Greer as its new Executive Director. Shane, who studied at Liverpool and Glasgow, has recently completed a three month internship with the Leadership Institute in Arlington, Virginia.

Shane writes a weekly 'Letter from London' about British politics for