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Excellent, moving targets around Westminster, must get the Mini-Moke out and affix the sabres to the sills.
I trust the bikes will come with panniers for boxes and such.

Err, I hope you're being ironic when you call the Tory labels on the bikes cool. Sounds a bit lame to me.


This is excellent news and not before time. I hope that all will now drive themselves around and all the money put into personnel who are in the main job of winning votes.

Dedicated drivers indeed!

When you say "dedicated driver", I presume you mean chauffeur+car+all expenses relating to both. What are we talking here - £50,000 pa? And the party has spent much of the last few years in big debt. What is wrong with these people? Budget for the chairman spending £200 a week on taxis and you have cut the bill by 80%. These people are offering themselves as government for the whole country. No wonder they won't commit to tax cuts.

Francis talks about the recruitment drive in some detail here:-


This has to be welcomed. CCHQ diverting money from a chauffeur to frontline campaigning. I am not Francis Maude's biggest admirer but I applaud him for this.

Yes, a chauffeur and car. The key bit of the story that you might have missed is that they are actually ending it!

Sam - you had me laughing out loud with that one. Exactly - a chauffeyr with a car! Not much use without the car. Though they could possibly buy a tandem and let Francis free wheel on the rear seat.

Sends the right message.

Sounds like a sensible idea. But why not ship CCHQ to the north of England? This would help save money and restore our fortunes north of Birmingham.


Will the membership have to opportunity to buy these becuase I would love one.

I spotted the fact that they are ending it, Dep Ed. But I wouldn't have made a show of it. If we are all agreed that this was a slightly embarrassing extravagance, better to cancel it quietly rather than shout "We've been wasting money for years, but finally the penny has dropped!"

I hope the local associations are going to be primed to cooperate with the membership drive. The lack of welcome of new members by many "closed shop" associations has been described all to often here. Many associations don't even have a proper list of their members - also need to make sure the new IT is ready first.

The Area and Regional Chairmen are going to liase with the Membership officers of each Association, Rachel.

thanks Sam - that's reassuring

This is good... Londoners should be encouraged to get on their bikes in general.

Great stuff and Rachel is completely 100% correct.

Is this some new Gordon Brown tax thing? Funnily enough, I got a note from my employer today offering a 'salary sacrifice' thing whereby I can use my pretax salary to buy a bike for commuting, but I have to buy it from a government-ordained list of bicycle suppliers and I have to use it 'mainly' or 'more than 50% of the time' for commuting to work, but this is allowed to include the journey from my home to my commuting station ... you get the idea ... something that started off as a good idea become a bureaucratic, costly mess.

So I won't be joining you behind the pannier. I shall remain on the upper deck of the bus, peering in horror at the life-threatening manoeuvring of the brave yet surely foolhardy cyclists on Shoreditch High Street.

Realistically, bikes have limited usefulness in this day and age. They're OK under certain circumstances, but a lot of the time they're no use at all - like windmills.

There were any number of "Tory Bicycles" around when I was Chair of the Junior Imperial League.

Several of them became Dames of the British Empire for services to the party

Arf! Arf!

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