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Conservative Campaign Headquarters

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  (Redirected from CCHQ)

Coordinates: 51°30′01″N 0°07′58″W / 51.5003°N 0.1328°W / 51.5003; -0.1328

Conservative Campaign Headquarters
Predecessor Conservative Central Office
Formation 1871 C&UCO (2014 CCHQ)
Location
  • 4 Matthew Parker Street, London SW1H 9HQ
Region
United Kingdom
Brandon Lewis
Deputy
James Cleverly
Director of Campaigning
Darren Mott OBE [1]
Carrie Symonds
Key people
Theresa May, Brandon Lewis, William Bayley [2], Simon Day[3], Lizzie Lumley [4]
Parent organization
The Conservative Party
Website conservatives.com

The Conservative Campaign Headquarters (CCHQ), formerly known as Conservative Central Office (CCO) is the headquarters of the British Conservative Party, housing its central staff and committee members, including campaign coordinators and managers[5]. As of January 2018, Brandon Lewis is Conservative Party chairman.

Campaigning

CCHQ is responsible for all campaigning of the Conservative Party, though it delegates responsibility for local campaigns to constituency Conservative Associations.[6] It maintains overall responsibility for targeting voters and seats, including shortlisting and finalising the selection of Conservative candidates across the United Kingdom for local and national elections.[7]

CCHQ is used as a phone bank for volunteers, and is most active at general elections and some by-elections.[8][9][10] The CCHQ Voter Communications Team also coordinates and manages data from local Conservative call centres.[11]

Following the 2017 general election in which the Conservative Party did not do as well as had been expected, CCHQ was described as “rusty” and less effective as it had been during previous elections in coordinating and managing its campaign.[12]

The call centre in Neath was the subject of scrutiny by The Electoral Commission following an investigation by The Guardian over alleged breach of marketing rules at a phone bank at Neath in Wales, which had employed paid staff to do its calling instead of volunteers and is alleged to have bribed some staff for underhand calling tactics.[13][14] Subsequent allegations have also been reported about the conduct of other Conservative staff.[15]

The CCHQ phone bank, uses the Conservative Party’s online calling database, ‘’Votesource’’.[16] This database was created in-house, but has not always functioned efficiently.[17][18]

The CCHQ Activist Centre which is the section of CCHQ which provides guidance to local Conservative Associations and candidates was closed down following the 2017 general election, with resources now being distributed directly by staff rather than passively through the online database to external Conservative staff.[19]

CCHQ is presided over by the Chairman of the Conservative Party, presently Brandon Lewis with assistance from the Conservative Director of Communications.

Location

Until 1958 CCO was based at Abbey House, Victoria Street, London, then moving to No. 32 Smith Square. This was the scene of many televised historic moments in Conservative history from Margaret Thatcher's victory rallies to Iain Duncan Smith's resignation. CCO moved in 2004 to nearby 25 Victoria Street for more high-tech facilities and subsequently became known as Conservative Campaign Headquarters (CCHQ).

On 6 March 2007, CCHQ moved again, this time to 30 Millbank, part of the property portfolio of David and Simon Reuben. On 10 February 2014, CCHQ moved to its current location at 4 Matthew Parker Street. They rent the ground and basement floors of the commercial property. Other buildings in the vicinity (on Matthew Parker Street), which fall beside and in front of CCHQ, consist primarily of dwellings, predominantly residential private flats.

Establishment

The establishment of Conservative Central Office dates back to 1871, with the creation of professional support for the Party by Sir John Gorst. Following election defeats in 1906 and 1910, in 1911 the post of Party Chairman was created to oversee the work of the Central Office.

Incidents

On 10 November 2010, 30 Millbank was attacked by student protesters as part of a demonstration against rises in tuition fees.

On 19 November 2014, demonstrators taking part in a free education demonstration in central London clashed with police outside 4 Matthew Parker Street, where the Conservative Campaign Headquarters relocated in February 2014.[20]

In June 2017, following the United Kingdom general election, 2017, CCHQ was blamed for the worse-than-expected result, with a number of new appointments, such as new Conservative Director of Communications, Carrie Symonds. Ms. Symonds claimed that there was "lots to do" in her new role.[12][21]

References

  1. ^ "Darren Mott, Director of Campaigning, the Conservative Party". 6 March 2017. 
  2. ^ https://www.linkedin.com/in/william-bayley-83356977
  3. ^ https://uk.linkedin.com/in/simon-day-34904a8
  4. ^ https://uk.linkedin.com/in/lizzielumley
  5. ^ https://www.conservatives.com/work-for-us
  6. ^ "Party Structure and Organisation". 
  7. ^ MP, Jessica Lee (26 June 2013). "Right Honourable Girlfriend: How to become a Tory MP" – via www.telegraph.co.uk. 
  8. ^ "I'm making calls to secure the strong and stable leadership we need to see us through Brexit and beyond. Join me:". 
  9. ^ "By-election Calling". www.conservatives.com. 
  10. ^ "By-election Calling". www.conservatives.com. 
  11. ^ "Watchdog warns Tories over call centre". 23 October 2017 – via www.bbc.co.uk. 
  12. ^ a b "Our CCHQ election audit: the rusty machine, part two. How and why the ground campaign failed. - Conservative Home". 
  13. ^ Morris, Steven (25 August 2017). "Police confirm inquiry into Tory election call centre use". the Guardian. 
  14. ^ Mason, Rowena (23 October 2017). "Tories rebuked over breach of marketing rules in general election". the Guardian. 
  15. ^ Hughes, Laura (16 March 2017). "Conservatives fined £70,000 and MP reported to the police following an investigation into election campaign expenses" – via www.telegraph.co.uk. 
  16. ^ https://votesource.uk
  17. ^ "VoteSource - Conservative Home". 
  18. ^ "I'm making calls to secure the strong and stable leadership we need to see us through Brexit and beyond. Join me:". 
  19. ^ "Activist Centre". 
  20. ^ Spillett, Richard (2014-11-19). "Student protestors march on Parliament Square and Tory party headquarters | Daily Mail Online". Dailymail.co.uk. Retrieved 2015-11-18. 
  21. ^ Symonds, Carrie. "Very pleased to be joining CCHQ as Director of Comms. Lots to do. Can't wait to get started". 

External links

  • Conservative Central Office archives


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