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I'd welcome this. Never been that keen on rosettes. They look like something from another age.

Why not go all the way and make them red to match the party's new ideals?

Seems like a good idea, the rosettes seem ridiculous nowadays...

Sorry. Ribbons are the symbol of slightly superior pressure groups not confident political parties.

But our party colours in ribbon form would be a blatant rip off of Breat Cancer...

Its a gimmick alright. For every good thing the Party does, it undermines it with another silly idea like this.

Ribbons are less "in your face". I might even wear one outside of campaigning...

Tim/Sam, you asked readers to come up with ideas for an alternative to the logo - why not the same for an alternative to a rosette?

"critics of Project Cameron may see it as a gimmick when the party should be focusing on more important things"

Too true.

Discrete ribbons are ok for the timid and outside election campaigns. Wear a rosette when campaigning, a great big one, and be proud.

Thanks Jonathan... I'll happily publish any designs that folk submit...

What about badges or stickers? Ribbons smack somewhat of charity campaigns.

Blue ribbon (or riband) is of course a traditional metaphor for quality, and thus highly appropriate. I’d wear one with pride.

Rosettes are several decades out of fashion, it's true, but two things strike me about the ribbon plan:

1. Ribbons are associated with charities or "problem" awareness;

2. Adding green to blue is short-term opportunism.

I'm surprised it's not a wristband!

Apart from being in the party colours, how would a ribbon display the name of the party? It's amazing the number of people who don't know that blue is Conservative etc.

I always wear a rosette when canvassing - I find I get a better response. Without it people expect you to be selling double glazing or religion. Even worse, some think that you might be a Lib Dem.

The ribbon idea is a good one. I can't stand rosettes and always avoid wearing one when campaigning. Some people look to ANY change as a way of bashing Cameron.

That said the use of green on it is a bad idea.

I too have never really liked rosettes. Its the sort of thing that looks better at dog shows.

I would like to see some quality badges being thought of. Do you remeber the silver versions of the torch. Indeed I even think I have a version fro the Vermin club - but not sure that's appropriate these days.

I too would like to see the name of the party somewhere.

Ah yes, a Libdem packed

Tie a yellow ribbon round the old oak tree

Has a member of the public ever objected to someone wearing a rosette? They're a recognisable symbol that makes it immediately clear to the public that there's an election on and that the person approaching them is canvassing for the Tory/Lab/Lib party.

Great idea.
Tree pinbadges too (they might already exist?). Nothing wrong with rosettes either if people want to wear them...we are the all inclusive party afterall. In fact wear what you like to campaign as long as we get the votes!

There is something special about the sight of half-a-dozen blue rosette wearing tories working up a street or through a market. It has impact, people notice.

I recall a by-election in Hackney - which we won - when we had 20-30 activists out all wearing blue rosettes. It was a busy market day and the Labour party didn't know what had hit them, everywhere they went they came across us - and the public noticed too.

I agree with Don Hoyle, they are a confident symbol and part of the armoury for convincing people we can win.

However, outside election times, we should have a lapel badge or brooch like Round Table, Rotary, Ladies Circle etc. This allows one to discreetly advertise one's loyalty and again smacks of confidence.

Mind you, the Round Table badge used to look like the badge of the esperanto society and I do recall once getting into a lift and the guy already in there started spouting this utter gibberish at me. Can't see that happenning with a discreet oak tree pin though.

CCHQ could get that nice jeweller next to Politico's stand to do an enamel version. sell well, I guess.

The great advantage of rosettes is precisely the fact that "They look like something from another age" (Andrew Woodman). That's because they're something from another age - they actually have their origin in racing colours but that's another matter - and the only time people ever wear them is during an election. That means (and here's the subtle part) it let's voters know that there's an election going on. Dan Hassett is exactly right: if you're knocking on someone's door, wearing a rosette let's them know precisely what you're after before you've opened your mouth - and as John Moss says a team marching along with rosettes will be a more visible presence than a team with ribbons would be (what about bespoke sweatshirts, though? even better still).

Although having said all that I remember standing on a polling station in Islington for a council by-election with tellers from the other parties and we were all wearing the relevant rosettes. A lady came up to vote with her young daughter in tow. The girl stopped, stared at all of us and exclaimed to her mother in awe "Look Mummy, all those people have won prizes." Sadly untrue....

Thank you, John M. I personally still wear a £ sign lapel badge in my suit jackets and other coats. Also in the fronds of my blue rosette when out canvassing.

It has been pointed out that the battle to save the pound has been won and the battle to stop the European constitutioin is about to be joined. Perhaps we could think of a symbol for that. A number of my friends said I ought to wear a big 'C' in my lapel, but I don't think they were referring to the Constitution.

William - are you etlling me wearing a rosette is worthw votes? I didnt wear a rosette during my election - but had a car covered in magnetic signs with the party logo and my name all over.

In some areas wearing a rosette means you arent even given the benefit! Rather the door opened and a conversation on the doorstep starts than being told to "f" off before you open your mouth.

What a good idea. I little less conspicuous and a lot more 'now'.

I would never wear a rosette but will use a ribbon happily.

While rosettes may let people know what you're all about on a doorstep, that can prove to be a disadvantage as Jonathan suggests. The person might have already made up their mind before you speak.

To me, rosettes look stuffy and don't do anything to help appeal to the turned off youth vote.

Lapel badges and pins with the new logo are available, from Selcraft - www.selcraft.com.

I dont mind being conspicuous. I got my lot to wear tshirts with my ugly mug on it when we went out in the centre of town, and various messages on the back.

Its personal choice I guess.

I think it is a load of rubbish. Concentrate on what really matters, such as policies.

Lets have more substance and less style!

While rosettes may let people know what you're all about on a doorstep, that can prove to be a disadvantage as Jonathan suggests. The person might have already made up their mind before you speak.

To me, rosettes look stuffy and don't do anything to help appeal to the turned off youth vote.

Blue and green should never be seen, unless there's something inbetween...

I guarantee you that the other parties will copy-cat this idea for fear of being visibly out of date.

All the fresh thinking is coming from Conservatives and we should be very positive about that.

Jon: if you're told to f-off on the doorstep whilst canvassing, haven't you achieved your objective? Discovered their voting intentions, 5 seconds max. Job done. Better that than wasting half an hour?

William, sometimes thats true - other times people have a very sterotypical view of the party (rosette = Tory Boy), yet once they talk to you Ive even managed to get people to join.

Isn't it somewhat worrying that issues like this generate more comment than a lot of substantive policy-driven ones?

I think both ribbons AND rosettes are hideous: and to whoever it was who questioned whether anyone objects to wearing rosettes - yes, I do, and haven't worn them for about a decade.

What we need is pin badges like they have in the US - far more effective, more durable, more cusomisable to local campaigns, make excellent souvenirs (and even become collectors items).

Ribbons are the worst of both worlds - you feel like a prize pony/pratt and you don't even get the slogan that the sticker on a rosette gives you. I also think ribbons are too small, and besides, a blue ribbon being worn on a (usually dark) coat when canvassing in the evening is going to have negligible effect.

Pin badges please!

...if you're told to f-off on the doorstep whilst canvassing, haven't you achieved your objective?

William, only if they weren't Conservative voters in the first place.

The fully rosetted Tory Boy that canvassed our house last GE managed to persuade my wife to vote Lib Dem. I think it was the line "let the effing Frogs have the Olympics" that did for us. The greased back hair on a young man rather added to the image.

Selcraft NOT seLLcraft. I've just checked it and they are 2 totally different sites (plus sellcraft comes with non-optional pop-ups!)

Alternative to a rosette - fine...replacement of rosettes - no.

CCHQ already produces "tree" lapel badges I think - certainly you used to be able to buy a torch lapel badge.

In elections, though, we need to make a splash - those who have described the impact of a large group of campaigners all wearing prominent party colours are absolutely right.

Peter Coe: Isn't it somewhat worrying that issues like this generate more comment than a lot of substantive policy-driven ones?

No. Whichever line people are taking, they're all approaching it from the practical perspective of how best to run an election campaign. Far better to discuss this than the usual hair-splitting stuff about whether Cameron eats babies (or whatever). Doesn't it strike you as odd, Peter, that our friends from UKIP have more or less steered clear of a subject that concerns the mechanics of fighting an election instead of being an armchair general?

PS: no offence, but speaking from an Agent's viewpoint: if you really object to wearing a blue rosette in public, I've have my doubts about whether I'd send you out canvassing. For different reasons, I'd also keep off the streets Valedictoryan's acquaintance with the slicked-back hair.

Jon Sheppard: T-shirts with your face on it + vulgar-sounding stickers on your car? Any you still got votes?

Mr Norton maybe that explained the 20,000 votes for my opponent!

I agree that rosettes should go, unless worn by prize bulls. But where would the 'discreet oak tree pin' come from, The National Trust or Barratts ?

This is an upside down SNP logo. I knew thinGs were bad for the Tories up North, but I'm noT sure that's the answer...

The blue ribbon looks nice, but to make it blue and green??? That's ridiculous!

Great news, I hope they go through with it. I for one can't be doing with the rosettes. Nothing says "Tory Boy" more than a rosette.

I found the comments of "we need to spend more time on policy and less on image" quite hilarious really. I would say that 18 months is quite long enough to spend on policy. No point in rushing, but you can hardly say we're not spending any time on it.

How would this change peoples attitudes to the symbols of charity campaigns like breast cancer or AIDS, if people can't tell whether your wearing a ribbon in support of a particular charity or political party?

Perhaps we could think of a symbol for that. A number of my friends said I ought to wear a big 'C' in my lapel, but I don't think they were referring to the Constitution.
How about an image of the EU President being staked through the heart or the EU Flag descending into the pit of hell!

One practicality problem - may returning offcers will only allow rosettes. I remember a few years back the Labour Party wearing actual red roses and they were told to take them off as the teller notes ruled for rosettes not alternatives. The same went for keep the £ lapel pins.

To me rosettes nowadays are for polling stations and counts, many activists have 'lucky rosettes' that they've worn since 1904 and list all the campaigns on the back that they've helped in. It might be old-fashioned but it's totally harmless.

I also know of some wards that use blue flowers or lapel pins.

I just hope topntails.co.uk are kept in the loop - whether it's rosettes, ribbons or full-on branded bodysuits I hope we'll continue to support small businesses like this rather than centrally sourcing everything.

Gareth, Agree we should always be supporting small businesses.

You say there are many activists with rosettes from 1904 - but do we have lots of activists that are a minimum of 103 years old?

Surely us, the true party of individual liberty, should not be making such a fuss about a further choice for our members.

The ribbon is an alternative to the rosette, not a replacement diktat from Team Cameron. Give our supporters the choice of how they show it and let's get on with winning elections!

What about "Make Labour History" wristbands, "Liberty and Livelihood" baseball hats and "My Other Car's a Toyota Prius" bumper stickers as well?

Nigel I have about 25 VOTE BLAIR OUT wristabnds I still haven't sold. Maybe that could be Gordon Browns logo.

Good point about polling stations - we all wore sweatshirts with candidate's name writ very large for canvassing, went down very well (we won back the seat), but weren't allowed to wear them whilst telling.

Good idea - you can wear a blue ribbon or stick it on your bag when it's not election time too to show you're Conservative and proud. We could have some in pin form if you prefer something more subtle all year round. You could even have a car window sticker version- though unfortunately that could see your car being rammed in some parts of the country...

Gareth, the presiding officer you refer to who ordered the removal of roses was talking bollocks for this very simple reason: there is no recognition of "tellers" in election law; and the law only applies to the confines of the polling place.

Tellers can wear anything they like outside a polling station and there's not a thing an official can do about it.

William Norton: I am talking about this from the perspective of an election agent, so no disrespect but if you're assessing your volunteers on the basis of whether or not they want to look like a prize ponce then you're going to be wasting a lot of resource needlessly. A sticker should more than suffice.

Honestly: measuring a person's commitment to a cause on the basis of whether they'll wear some grotesque frilly satin and card brooch! Besides, they do clash horribly with my stylish yet affordable outfits, sweetie.

Whatever next?

Let me just clarify my previous post: there are election rules about political advertising in public spaces - to prevent posters being put up in the vicinity polling stations for instance, but I reiterate that any presiding officer that orders the removal of roses, or stickers or slogans from individuals operating outside polling stations is not acting with any legal authority.

"Lets have more substance and less style!"

To borrow an American expression, we can walk and chew gum.

I have no problems wearing a rosette - I like mine and wear it when I'm campaigning.

That said, if some people want to use a ribbon, that's fine by me.

What gets me - and I've been complaining for years - is our "Vote Conservative" posters. Nobody can read them - unlike the Dim Leb posters, which are dark
black words printed on a light yellow and are triangular shaped. You can post them from miles away.

The tree is growing on me!

"blue rosette wearing tories working up a street or through a market. It has impact, people notice."
And run away to hide! Rosettes look far too over-confident, even arrogant. They make the canvasser look like a weird political anorak, who instantly loses ability to be seen as an ordinary person and so relate with the voter/cornered individual.

Take some anti-CIA flight campaigners at Essex University a few weeks ago in their orange jump suits on the square, most walked the long way round to avoid them. Big impact certainly, but didn't work. No one wanted to get "cornered" by them.

Ribbons are a great idea. If you want big impact, get some nice light blue t-shirts and sweatshirts made with the name/logo neatly printed on them discreetly. It's smart, professional, casual and above all - normal looking. It's better to look like a smart-casual ordinary person "helping out" than a political anorak (as rossettes are such an odd item to wear it makes the wearer seem odd).

Rossettes will also forever be trademark Harry Enfield Tory Boy. We need to get away from that image, and the whole slimey politician image. So ditch rossettes, ties, combed back hair and jackets - and bring forwards ribbons and the smart casual look.

We should welcome the choice anyway.

Perhaps our Editor should demonstrate that he is as ever in the vanguard of Conservative thought by changing the rosette on his 'ToryDiary' weblink to a ribbon.

"What gets me - and I've been complaining for years - is our "Vote Conservative" posters. Nobody can read them - unlike the Dim Leb posters, which are dark
black words printed on a light yellow and are triangular shaped. You can post them from miles away."

I seem to recall that the Tories once had diamond shaped posters like the Lib Dems and yes, they did stand out a lot better. Although one year (either 1999 or 2001) for some strange reason they were white. Blue stood out a lot better.

Yes, yes, change and more change. Change must go further and deeper. Change to win. Change is our friend. Above all, change this habit of thinking about and discussing policies. Policies mean thinking and that hurts a chap's brain. And when we've changed everything - well, let's go back and change everything all over again!! Super!!!

I think it is true that sometimes rosettes are a little too "in your face" and are sometimes all that people see, and often gives the image of a "typical politician". Something like the ribbon badge proposed would be more discreet while still signifying a brand, would be different from the other parties, and I for one would be more likely to use one while out working on peacetime campaigning, where a rosette doesn't always feel appropriate.

In response to other comments above, a huge visual show is a useful tool in motivating our base and getting out the vote in some wards with high pledge bases. Sometimes, however, I have run GoTV campaigns where my aim has been to very closely target individual Conservative pledges, working under the radar in mufti. Whether a big splash on polling day is good or bad is obviously dependent on your overall strategy.

One thing that I have thought about in the past, while (almost) on the subject, is the provision of some form of identification for activists as well - perhaps it's a reflection on people's feelings of safety or otherwise in the modern world. but When visiting, for example, warden controlled accommodation, and asking permission to deliver literature and/or talk to residents, I have been asked for ID. I tend to keep my most recent conference pass in the back of my wallet for this, and present that with my driving licence somewhat apologetically! It's not as professional as it could be, given that we're knocking on the doors of people's homes.

I'd be interested in other peoples' thoughts on this - I can't be the only one to experience this, can I? It obviously couldn't easily be done for people who lend a hand on the odd day, but perhaps Associations could issue something to their key workers? Or could something be offered centrally more easily - it wouldn't be the whole solution, but the conference office and organisers do already hold photos, details and conduct police checks on those of us that go to Conference.

I'm sure there are pitfalls galore to this, but I offer it as something to think about.

While out delivering Tory leaflets last weekend I carried my stock in a highly visible plastic bag with the torch emblem and 'Conservative' in large blue letters on it. All it gained me were lots of well-aimed snowballs.


" I think it was the line "let the effing Frogs have the Olympics" that did for us."

Oh, if only we had. Just think how much better off the Council Tax payers of London would be for the next 30 years.

All it gained me were lots of well-aimed snowballs.

I hope you gave as good as you got! Another reason to give an alternative to the rosette that gives better mobility in combat situations...

I tend to go for a shoulder bag when delivering, myself - helps to have both hands free for wrestling those leaflet-eating letter boxes with brushes inside that have obviously been decommissioned from a road-sweeper!

"Oh, if only we had."

Jon, it ain't what you say it's the way that you say it!

If you treat Conservatism as you would a disease it might get treated as one.

By all means have a blue ribbon, but don't have green included with it.

You will have all sorts of problems, as Lloyds TSB use blue AND green, due to the fact they were formed from a merger between companies who had blue [TSB] and green [Lloyds] as their corporate colours. All their advertising still has this branding, so please avoid confusion by also living in the world of 'blue & green'.

Not least because you might have legal difficulties, but more because it is quite a
naff colour combination - after all our mums told us 'blue and green should never be seen..' and many of us are old enough to realise that our mums are invariably right..

Why don't you tie the ribbons in your hair, and then completley finish off the pathetic, wussy loser look?

Dear me, just when you think it can't get any worse, it does and then some.

Hurry up and destroy yourselves and make way for a party that will be serious and give some real opposition.

The creation of the broccoli "tree" logo was such a masterstroke of pathetic limpwristedness the Camerloons are having to scrape the bottom of the barrel to find anything to match it.

This moronic proposal goes pretty far in that direction. It also bears the essential hallmark of Cameroonism, being a totally unoriginal ripoff of somebody else's idea.

One possible problem. There are now hundreds of different charity ribbons. Presumably at least one other organisation already uses dark blue.

No problem. Switch to some other sissy pastel shade. Pity the greens and the gays have already reserved the obvious prime choices.

What does it matter ? Buy metal badges and have done with it.

You are in danger of vanishing from the Northern landscape and all you can go on about is decorations

Letting the French win the Olympics if it would have cost London taxpayers oodles of dosh was a UKIP policy, announced in a press release at the time...

Blatant homophobia in Mr. Forsyth’s latest post. So much for wanting to ban people who make such objectionable comments.

Traditionally, the colour of ribbon most associated with oak trees is yellow - which fits in perfectly with the direction Camerloon is taking the party in...

Does anyone really imagine that the general public give two hoots? I'm sure they don't, and they would probably question whether or not we have better things to do with our time rather than quibble over ribbons and rosettes.

Instead of rosettes or ribbons, how about face painting?

Blatant homophobia in Mr. Forsyth’s latest post. So much for wanting to ban people who make such objectionable comments.

Ooh Justin. Aren't we touchy today? Now why should you assume that my use of the words 'limpwristedness' and 'sissy' automatically relates to the Gay Community?

Coming from someone who has already caused genuine offence to members of racial/religious minorities that's rich indeed.

I have not been offensive to anyone. Repeat that slur and I'll be tempted to sue you (although would I want to give you such publicity?). I know your game...

why not an "elephant"?

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