So what’s happening at Conference? Part 2: The Training

A Liberal Youth training sessionPart 2 of my quick guide to Conference features the training programme that’s on offer on Saturday. You can read Part 1 on the debates here.

The biggest problem with Conference is that there simply isn’t enough time to do everything you want. There aren’t enough hours in the day, even if you dispense with sleeping to catch up with friends and go to all the debates and fine meetings and training sessions you want. That’s not just because many of the things you want to go to will be on at the same time. Every year I have the same nightmare trying to arrange my Conference schedule, and even when I think I’ve cracked it, even more temptations come along to distract me. Proper, worthy distractions, I mean, not just someone offering gin.

On Saturday, alongside all the interesting debates I mentioned earlier, there is a full training programme. You could be in sessions from 9:15am to 5:30 pm.

There are 3 main training providers. Liberal Democrat Women has courses for women covering all aspects of the selection process.

ALDC can show you everything you need to build your campaign, from sessions on the postal vote, how to run a council campaign and specifically the final 8 weeks. Once you have won, they have sessions on how to be an effective councillor.

LDHQ have various departments running courses on campaigning, political communication, fundraising, building and running an effective campaign team and taking good photos. The geeks are out in force to teach you about the party’s techy stuff, CONNECT, PagePlus and Nationbuilder. One you’ve used them, you’ll never want to be without them. You will probably want to get at least one person from your local party to go to one of the Growing your Membership sessions given that if you do grow your membership, it’s well worth your while financially now. An increase in 10 or more members over 3 months could give you 40% of their subscriptions in your bank account to pay for your campaigns.

Finally, if you’re going to be an election agent this year and want to stay out of jail, the Agents’ and Organisers’ Association have a session which will tell you everything you need to know.

All training is free and is available only to party members.

All the papers and information about Conference are available here on the party website.

* Caron Lindsay is Editor of Liberal Democrat Voice and blogs at Caron's Musings

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This entry was posted in Op-eds.


  • Jonathan Brown 27th Feb '14 - 12:37am

    “An increase in 10 or more members over 3 months could give you 40% of their subscriptions in your bank account to pay for your campaigns.”

    Isn’t it 40% of your entire membership’s subscriptions? Or is it just the new ones?

  • Jonathan, you are correct. A net increase of 1 in a quarter means an extra 20% and a net increase of 10 gives you an extra 40%. This percentage is calculated over all your membership fees for that quarter.

    Next quarter you get the same opportunity and financial benefit to increase your membership again! Very helpful for fighting funds so close to election time…

  • Caron Lindsay Caron Lindsay 27th Feb '14 - 11:43am

    Yes, there is now a significant, tangible, local benefit for signing up members in your area.

  • Jonathan Brown 27th Feb '14 - 11:15pm

    Good news!

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