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Alan Duncan for Newcastle seems strange. It's nowhere near him. I'd have thought William Hague would have been the logical choice.

Wonder who the East Midlands cities are getting.

And who gets Sunderland?


What about Reading?

I'm not sure there's supposed to be rhyme or reason to these twinnings. It's about presentation. Some of them appear to be token gestures - someone to write to; someone to make a few high-profile visits for the media; someone to exert a 'presence' in the absence of any councillors or sitting Conservative MPs.

Can someone please tell me whether all this is necessary?

In view of the rivalry between Edinburgh and Glasgow it seems a bit odd to give Edinburgh to Lord Strathclyde. Especially when the Marquess of Lothian is Michael Ancram.

Julian - Reading has a Conservative MP, so doesnt really need a Minister. It is also not a City. However I would have thought that Oxford needed some attention!

The party has for a long time had a poor feel for issues in many parts of the country. Only time will tell if this will improve matters, but I for one welcome the effort being made.

I think edinburgh could have been given to Fox surely, to reflect its importance as the sort of city that should be making a conservative gain in. Perhaps Strarthclyde could then have been given Glasgow and Mundell Aberdeen perhaps?

Oxford is a very important suggestion.

It is presently being run by a Labour and predominantly Muslim cohort, as though the two go hand in hand. It is surrounded by safe Conservative seats, many of whom are in the shadow cabinet or have some shadow ministerial brief.

Why not Boris for Oxford?

This is very amusing and very reminiscent of the scene in Reservoir Dogs when they are handing out the names.

"Aah why do I have to be Minister for Newcastle. Can't William have it? I want to be Minister for Coventry."

"No, William's minister for Bradford and Leeds. He can't be minister of the whole North of England. You get what you're given."

"But Coventry is not too far from my pad in London! I can't speak Geordie. Please, can I have Coventry?"


"Oxford is a very important suggestion.
It is presently being run by a Labour"

I thought it's run by the Libdems in a minority administration.
But there has been a couple of defections in recent weeks, so I don't know if something has changed

And Cambridge?

surely Andrew Lansley would be the natural choice for Cambridge. His seat is next door.

OK. After all my carping about chameleonism I have to admit this is a genuinely creative idea that does no harm. Well done PRs! It might even do some good and must be worth a try.

During the cold war when I was in the TA I used to think we were too ill-equipped and undertrained to fight a mobile war but might be quite tough to dislodge if allowed to adopt a particular (German) area well in advance. Instead they always had us doing Dad's Army type frontal assaults over mowed grass with no sense of what we would actually do in Germany when the balloon went up. Don't know if this is relevant but it sprung to mind seeing G Osborne adopt Madchester and Mr Duncan Newcastle, and is offered in a spirit of humility.

Presumably David Davis will be assigned to Hull?

Ministers for Leeds and Bradford
William Hague and Eric Pickles

Ha ! Ha ! Ha ! At least Cameron has a GSOH. People have not forgotten Eric Pickles and the mess he created.........this should go down like a lead balloon.


I thought Oliver Heald had been appointed Minister for Sheffield

Its an inventive approach to a big problem. I am sure that at least some of the Shadow cabinet will be able to have an impact.

Simon, the Yorkshire Post did say that Heald got Sheffield, and I'm sure that's true, but he wasn't on the party's confirmed list.

Oliver Heald had a meeting with the Sheffield Conservatives a couple of weeks ago I believe, so it's pretty certain.

Wakefield?? We got 4 net gains in Wakey at the last locals. There is such potential here but, once agian, we are forgotten.

I assume Cheryl Gillan will be appointed Minister For Cardiff.

It says so much that people think Cambridge represents the same sort of challenge to the Conservatives as Sheffield or Newcastle...

Oxford is too far gone to bother with - and in a different way to other cities. The middle classes there have turned into sandal-wearing, Guardian and Independent reading loons. In most of its leafy suburbs its the LibDems vs the Greens. Heck - a good number of the members of the North Oxford Conservative club vote Lib Dem, and the Constituency Association (in Oxford West) is a bigger joke than the University Conservative Association.

The one way we might win it back is by putting up a striking candidate. Someone like Louise Bagshawe might be able to do it, but this is one seat which worthiness and hard work alone will not be enough to take.

Leeds is a city with no conservative MP's yet the Tories have been running the council in a joint administration with the Lib Dem's. we in the conservative party have got to win in the north to get into government. Seats like Elmet, Colne Valley and Shipley need to be won and retained.

The Marquess of Lothian sits for Devizes - some schlepp up and over the Border for him to be a Minister for the Glens or whatever!

I think some of the comments on here might display evidence of the fair criticism that the party hasn't really addressed the North seriously for a number of years. While William Hague might be a good choice for any number of North East cities, there shouldn't be a need to stretch the resources by pulling him to Leeds and Newcastle and is only there because we have so few Northern MPs.

The constituency I live in is, I believe, a case in point. Leeds, North West, is a seat which from the 60s up to 97 was Tory held (and for much of that time very safe and even in 97 pretty low down the Labour target list). When the Labour MP retired at the last election it was taken by the LibDems and my impression was that we really didn't put a lot of effort into campaigning here, at least compared with the blitz of campaigning done by the Lib Dems. In terms of demographics the seat includes the traditional "old Yorkshire" market town of Otley and some of the most exclusive suburbs which together really wouldn't look out of place in Surrey, a large student population and Muslim community in Burley/Hyde Park. If we can't appeal to such a constituency it suggests that we can't appeal to the country more widely. It seems to me wrong to abandon seats like this to the fate of Oxford West and allow it to become LibDem heartland.

Well done to DC and the shadow cabinet for recognising and taking active steps to address this key issue in trying to make the party able to win!

As a Tory of North Eastern origin I find it pretty dissapointing that only one of the big North Eastern cities is represented. I cannot really imagine that many people from Durham or Sunderland are particularly pleased that the only North Eastern city in the list is Newcastle.

Mat! Have you forgotten that Philip Davies won Shipley for us?? And judging from the high profile he is maintaining, he will retain it.

If this is about showing we want to win in these areas then I would have thought we could do with some help to the SW. Cornwall might not have a city but it could certainly do with some attention from the shadow cabinet.

Instead of loading M.P.'s with Shadow Minister duties, why not appoint Tory peers
to do some of the donkey work in the big cities? The M.P.'s like to think they are more legitimate than peers, but many peers
have good political talents which ought to be used.

That love, not time, heals all wounds?

Without art the crudeness of reality would make the world unbearable~

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