The Conservative Party conference begins, but is anyone paying attention?
More than a decade ago, George Osborne came up with the wheeze to sign a long-term contract with the Manchester Central Convention Complex to host the Tories’ annual gathering every other year. Osborne—then MP for Tatton, the Tunbridge Wells of Cheshire—believed it would be a bridgehead for the Tories’ capture of parliamentary seats and councils in the north-west.
The plan was not without merit. The 2019 election saw notable Conservative advances in the ‘red wall’—but not Manchester. The Tories are as welcome here as brother Liam at Noel Gallagher’s Christmas lunch.