X

Create an account to continue reading.

Registered readers have access to our blogs and a limited number of magazine articles
For unlimited access to The Spectator, subscribe below

Registered readers have access to our blogs and a limited number of magazine articles

Sign in to continue

Already have an account?

What's my subscriber number?

Subscribe now from £1 a week

Online

Unlimited access to The Spectator including the full archive from 1828

Print

Weekly delivery of the magazine

App

Phone & tablet edition of the magazine

Spectator Club

Subscriber-only offers, events and discounts
 
View subscription offers

Already a subscriber?

or

Subscribe now for unlimited access

ALL FROM JUST £1 A WEEK

View subscription offers

Thank you for creating your account – To update your details click here to manage your account

Thank you for creating your account – To update your details click here to manage your account

Thank you for creating an account – Your subscriber number was not recognised though. To link your subscription visit the My Account page

Thank you for creating your account – To update your details click here to manage your account

X

Login

Don't have an account? Sign up
X

Subscription expired

Your subscription has expired. Please go to My Account to renew it or view subscription offers.

X

Forgot Password

Please check your email

If the email address you entered is associated with a web account on our system, you will receive an email from us with instructions for resetting your password.

If you don't receive this email, please check your junk mail folder.

X

It's time to subscribe.

You've read all your free Spectator magazine articles for this month.

Subscribe now for unlimited access – from just £1 a week

You've read all your free Spectator magazine articles for this month.

Subscribe now for unlimited access

Online

Unlimited access to The Spectator including the full archive from 1828

Print

Weekly delivery of the magazine

App

Phone & tablet edition of the magazine

Spectator Club

Subscriber-only offers, events and discounts
X

Sign up

What's my subscriber number? Already have an account?

Thank you for creating your account – To update your details click here to manage your account

Thank you for creating your account – To update your details click here to manage your account

Thank you for creating an account – Your subscriber number was not recognised though. To link your subscription visit the My Account page

Thank you for creating your account – To update your details click here to manage your account

X

Your subscriber number is the 8 digit number printed above your name on the address sheet sent with your magazine each week.

Entering your subscriber number will enable full access to all magazine articles on the site.

If you cannot find your subscriber number then please contact us on customerhelp@subscriptions.spectator.co.uk or call 0330 333 0050.

You can create an account in the meantime and link your subscription at a later time. Simply visit the My Account page, enter your subscriber number in the relevant field and click 'submit changes'.

Coffee House

The Tory ‘rally’ that wasn’t: these photos reveal how modern campaigning works

7 April 2015

7:29 PM

7 April 2015

7:29 PM

David Cameron took the stage at an election rally in Wadebridge, Cornwall this evening. He was surrounded by supporters waving placards. From the pictures, it seems there was a real sense of excitement about the Conservative party.

BRITAIN-POLITICS-VOTE-CONSERVATIVE

But here are a couple of photos taken from a perspective that’s a bit, er, different.

[Alt-Text]


Well, it’s impressive enough the Tories found a barn sufficiently large for them to fit a bus in it, let alone a barn so big you could fit an entire fleet of buses and your activists in it.

But what’s more impressive is that this isn’t a rally at all, is it? It’s not even a rally in the sense that the massive barn, which is actually the Royal Cornwall Show ground, normally sees in terms of vintage steam rallies and so on. It’s certainly not one of those rallies that parties hold at conference time, or indeed a rally in the traditional sense where normal people turn up. This appears to be a rallying of party activists towards the cameras, a photographic backdrop for the Prime Minister featuring the converted, not the curious.

This isn’t unusual for any party. Labour’s speech from Tony Blair this morning seemed to have attracted along the usual crowd of people who didn’t like anyone who disagreed with or indeed questioned the former Prime Minister. The parties summon these applauding placard-bearers from their membership lists or sympathetic organisations in order to create an atmosphere for the cameras and evening news bulletins, rather than to persuade anyone present at the ‘rally’. It’s a pragmatic approach to politics as it focuses on the millions who will watch the party leader speaking, rather than the hundred or so people in the barn or carefully-chosen speech venue. But it probably also contributes to the rather flat overall atmosphere of this election so far. We’re a long way from the organic excitement of the Scottish referendum.

event

Give something clever this Christmas – a year’s subscription to The Spectator for just £75. And we’ll give you a free bottle of champagne. Click here.


Show comments
Close