The following article appeared on the Progress website yesterday, to which I replied today:
Rebuild? Yes. Completely? No.
There are examples around the country of highly successful campaigning branches and CLPs, that have connections with mainstream single issue organisations, resident groups, development trusts and the like. As a possible step to getting a better understanding of this 'good' campaigning capacity, as opposed to the 'rotten boroughs' branch and CLP model (that I suspect we are both familiar with), I made a suggestion to Prime Minister Gordon Brown at the last Labour Party NEC. I proposed that he got a briefing from the General Secretary about the number of active branches operating at a local government electoral ward level throughout the country.Going back a bit, the LabOUR Commission wrote to the then chair of the NEC, Mike Griffiths, in May 2007 suggesting detailed research on the state of the party on the ground. All to no avail, yet. As a member of Save the Labour Party since 2003, I could go on. But if you look at our latest newsletter for CLP and branch officers we are offering a survey service for our affiliated CLP and branch members to find out about member loyalties ahead of the election. It is a communications device.
The responses via the Labour Party Membersnet accounted for just 1% of total respondents (n=421) last week, compared with over 60% via a Facebook group, 'At the 2010 General Election, I am voting Labour'. Whatever Head Office's shortcomings, our view is that we, the members, should just get on and communicate with each other.
I suppose that I should have added that that way we will be in a better position to know whether to dissolve the current organisation and start again, or not.
I'm still optimistic that by shining bright lights in dark corners we can save the day, get re-elected and rebuild the party.