In a bid to boost party membership numbers, the Conservative Party is looking to introduce discount cards that offer deals on high street goods and food outlets, such as the popular fast food chain Nando’s. The £25-a-year subscription aims to encourage more people to sign up to the party by giving members more for their money.
What do members currently get?
Currently, a Conservative Party subscription – supported by membership management systems technology – provides members with party updates and the chance to buy a party conference ticket. As a member, leadership contests and local candidate voting are also open to them.
Figures show that compared with an astonishing 552,000 Labour supporters, Conservative Party member numbers are at an all-time low, standing at just 124,000.
Labour is now the largest party in western Europe following a membership surge over the past couple of years. The figures are impressive: membership in 2015 – when Jeremy Corbyn took over as leader of the party – stood at a mediocre 200,000. Drawing such data from membership systems can be complex, although organisations such as https://www.ofec.co.uk/web-and-software-development-services/membership-management-systems.aspx can help with this process.
Other statistics include that a combined figure of 1.6 per cent of the 2018 electorate is now a member of either the Conservative, Labour or Liberal Democrat parties. Interestingly, this is double the figure of 0.8 per cent from five years ago. Across the country, Labour’s membership increased from 0.4 per cent in 2013 to a 2018 figure of 1.2 per cent. Other figures also make for interesting reading.
The drinks are on us
Earlier this year, Conservative Centre Headquarters (CCHQ) called on MPs to arrange drinks parties and organise parliament trips for young members and activists to encourage them to start campaigning for the party. Youth engagement at the party is currently being re-launched after it took a nose dive after the 2015 suicide of activist Elliott Johnson. Its reputation was severely tarnished after Johnson, aged 21, wrote a letter just before his death saying he had been at the mercy of a bully who was closely linked to the party. His death marked the suspension of Conservative Future – the youth arm of the party – with its management firmly placed under the control of CCHQ.