A big thank you to all those Londoners who voted Conservative in the various Council and European Elections on 22nd May 2014. Thank you too to the thousands of Conservative activists and supporters whose work, not just in the election period but over months and, in some cases years, helped to take the messages about our record of achievement and our honest, practical and, above all deliverable policies, to all sections of their local communities.
May 22nd 2014 will see Londoners go to the polls to elect 1855 local Councillors, four directly elected Mayors in Hackney, Lewisham, Newham and Tower Hamlets and eight Members of the European Parliament - the members of our Conservative Euro Team are pictured opposite with the Prime Minister. You can find out more about the European Elections and your local Borough campaigns by visiting our Election 2014 page.
At the conclusion of this year's London Regional elections two members of the current team; Graham Postles (Chairman) and Edward Heckels (Deputy Chairman - Political), were re-elected, Tara Douglas-Home (Deputy Chairman - Membership & Finance) having previously been returned unopposed.
London might not be going to the polls for local government and European Parliamentary elections until 22nd May 2014, however, campaigning activity is in full swing right accross the region.
Over 650 members from the London Region attended the Conservative Party Conference in Manchester which closed with a rallying call from Prime Minister David Cameron in which he called into sharp focus the major political and philosophical differences between the Conservative and Labour visions of Britain in the run-up to the 2015 General Election and beyond.
Our picture shows London Regional Chairman Graham Postles introducing the Prime Minister and London Mayor Boris Johnson at our successful London reception held in association with our colleages in the South East Region.
The team of candidates that will represent the Conservative Party in the London Region in next May's direct elections to the European Parliament was announced at Conservative Campaign Headquarters in Westminster at noon today, following a ballot of Conservative Party members across the Capital. Our three sitting Conservative MEPs, Syed Kamall, Dr Charles Tannock and Marina Yannakoudakis are joined by five new candidates.
We’re investing more in frontline NHS services.
Today we’re announcing an extra £160 million for the Cancer Drugs Fund – to give more patients access to the latest and best cancer drugs.
By taking the difficult decisions to cut inefficient spending elsewhere, we’re in a position to increase investment in the most important areas and give patients the care they need.
The Cancer Drugs Fund has already secured world-class and life-enhancing medication for over 55,000 patients – giving hope to them and their families.
Today’s news of more funding – which is only possible because of our long-term economic plan and careful management of the nation’s finances – will give that hope to many more.
Four years ago we inherited a welfare system from Labour that had totally failed.
Labour wrote benefit cheque after benefit cheque – with 1.4 million people spending almost a decade on out-of-work benefits.
That’s why fixing welfare is central to our long-term economic plan. We can’t keep spending money we don’t have on welfare hand-outs, burdening our children with more debt than they could ever hope to repay.
This isn’t just about making the numbers add up – it’s about doing what’s fair and right.
The welfare system must provide a safety net for those in need – but it must also always reward the willingness to work.
That’s why we’ve capped benefits, so no one can claim more than the average family earns by working.
But Labour still haven’t learned their lesson. Ed Miliband would scrap our benefit cap and replace it with a system that could, for example, mean handing up to £54,000 a year in benefits to people living in London.
That’s equivalent to a pre-tax wage of over £80,000 – a slap in the face for the hardworking taxpayers who would pay for it and yet more evidence that Labour still stand for benefits as a lifestyle choice.
For millions of people, an apprenticeship is the key to getting on in life.
It gives them the chance to learn skills, earn a salary and gain vital qualifications.
Since 2010, we’ve created 1.8 million apprenticeships. That means young people up and down the country are kick-starting their working lives and fulfilling their potential.
Today we’re launching a campaign to encourage even more young people to start an apprenticeship. There’s now a greater variety and quality of apprenticeships on offer, with new employer-designed apprenticeships in sectors such as engineering, hospitality and the legal profession.
By delivering the best skills, we’re helping young people get on in life and ensuring Britain succeeds in the global race.
Apprenticeships are a vital part of our long-term economic plan to secure a stronger, healthier economy – and a better future for Britain.
Families are at the heart of our long-term economic plan.
Supporting family life helps secure a better future for the next generation. That’s why we’re doing all we can to help families by:
1. Supporting parents
We’re nearly doubling the annual relationship support budget to £19.5m, helping more families stay together.
2. Helping troubled families
We’re extending our support programme for troubled families, helping with problems such as unemployment, debt and truancy. That will give many of our most vulnerable children a more stable and secure start in life.
3. Giving more children a family
The number of adoptions increased by a quarter last year, thanks to more financial support for councils and voluntary groups, and speeding up the adoption process. These improvements balance the need to find families for children with robust checks of adoptive parents.
We’re now going even further. From this year, all school children adopted from care will benefit from £1,900 of pupil premium money; and from next year, adoptive parents will receive more help with our new £19m Adoption Support Fund.
4. Putting families at the heart of our plan
Every single domestic policy that we propose will be examined for its impact on the family – and only approved if it passes the ‘family test’. That ensures the family is always at the heart of our long-term economic plan.
By supporting families in all that we do, we’re helping secure a stronger society today and a better future for Britain tomorrow.