This is the future of the Conservative Party in South Shields – the only constituency in the country never to return a Tory MP.
A branch of the party’s young-wing, Conservative Future, has been launched.
It’s time we didn’t rely on pensionersSam Prior
The aim of the membership is to instil a youthful enthusiasm back into party politics locally and generate more support.
The long-term hope of the group – launched at a gathering at Cafe Blanca, in Harton Village earlier this month – is that one day have a Conservative MP will be elected in the town, something not achieved since the Reform Act of 1832.
That’s a big ask.
At the last general election in May, the party candidate Robert Oliver trailed in third with 16.6% of the vote, behind Norman Dennis for UKIP and Labour’s Emma Lewell-Buck.
But the chairman of the town’s new young Tory grouping, Sam Prior, who has just finished his A-levels at Harton Technology College, is an optimist.
He said: “It’s time we didn’t rely on pensioners to run the party, we need an influx of younger people to become active and interested in politics and get out there and promote Conservative values and post leaflets through letterboxes.
“There were eight members at the meeting and we are hoping to attract more – and we’re planning an annual general meeting in September.
“Ours is the only seat never to have a Tory MP and our aim to change that over time and inspire people to vote Conservative.”
Conservative Future is for anybody under the age 30, but is not all about politics.
Sam added: “Although we are a political group, we engage in various social activities such as going out for branch dinners, so being part of Conservative Future is not all about politics but rather bringing like-minded young people together in a social environment.”
The group has Twitter and Facebook accounts, it can be found on Twitter @southshieldscf and the Facebook page is simply South Shields Conservative Future.
The email address is SouthShieldsCF@aol.co.uk