Gorefield Public Meeting
Just over a week ago I was asked to organise a Public Meeting and Campaign Session for all seven of the Conservative MEP candidates for our region – and I had to do it (a) within a week and (b) on a Bank Holiday Monday! Cue lots of pulling out hair and general panic on my part. Particularly since I was doing this in the middle of a by-election campaign in the same area and that our MP, Steve Barclay, was also going to attend.
Never mind, we got there. The candidates wanted to come to Roman Bank so I booked the village hall in Gorefield and then set about delivering hundreds of flyers to let people know it was on. I had no idea what to expect – it’s not easy to get people to come to a political campaign meeting at the best of times, let alone on a Bank Holiday and let alone when it’s lovely and sunny!
In fact the hall was nearly full. We had 67 attendees, plus the candidates. The format was a short presentation by each candidate followed by a question and answer session with the audience. A number of interesting questions were asked and the MEPs were well received by an interested and intelligent audience.
After this, the Candidates joined local Conservative candidate Samantha Clark on a mass canvass through Gorefield. We were joined by two dozen Conservative activists and this meant we were able to roll effectively through the entire main area of the village taking in the High Road, Back Road, St Marks Road, Churchill Road and the Oxfield Drive Estate before we ran out of time. Of course, we’ve already canvassed all these roads several times, but it’s nice to revisit houses where you didn’t catch anybody home and try and talk to the ones you missed last time.
After this we all decamped to Wetherspoons in Wisbech for a very pleasant lunch. Then the team moved to the Market Square to talk to pedestrians and shoppers and generally to mingle. I think some folk were surprised to see their MP, all seven of the Eastern Conservative MEP candidates and so many activists, but the reactions were friendly and engaged.
I then left the MEP team to get on with their road show and headed back into Roman Bank; specifically Newton and the long difficult Sutton Road stretch. Only a few days to go until the By-Election and every second counts. I’ll be glad, come the small hours of Friday morning, when this latest one is over and I can have a rest. And hopefully, good people of Roman Bank be willing, a celebratory drink. Fingers crossed.