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Guildford Labour Accuse Tories of Stealing Their Style

Published on: 30 Oct, 2023
Updated on: 3 Nov, 2023

By Martin Giles

Guildford Labour is complaining about a Conservative campaign leaflet styled, it says, to imitate that of the Labour Party.

The leaflet draws attention to the financial issues at Guildford Borough Council, led by the Liberal Democrats since their victory at the May election.

Conservative campaign leaflet October 2023

Brian Creese, former chair of the local branch, said: “It looked like one of ours, but I hadn’t seen it before – and then I realised that it was from the Conservative Party. Pure Labour red, attacking the Lib Dems and even the Conservative logo was on a red block at the bottom.

“I suppose we should see it as a compliment that the local Tories are pretending to be Labour, but it is fundamentally dishonest and disrespectful of voters.”

The Dragon asked the chair of the Guildford Conservative Association, Christian Holliday, why he was not confident that his party’s usual branding would attract interest in its leaflets and why the notice had conflated two subjects of public interest, the Housing Revenue Account overspend with the budget deficit issue at GBC?

Christian Holliday

He responded: “I don’t believe that the Labour Party has a monopoly on the use of the colour red and I am mystified why the local Labour Party think we would have anything to gain by trying to impersonate them.

“All the information in the literature is factually correct. The budget deficit issue and HRA overspend are rightly connected and both point to financial incompetence in the Lib Dem administration. It is wholly appropriate that Guildford residents are made aware of the council’s failings.”

Brian Creese

Brian Creese said: “The Guildford Dragon has recently taken the view that political parties should not pretend to be some sort of newspaper when they put out their leaflets, a campaign Guildford Labour completely supports.

“We are proud to be Guildford Labour and will always badge our material in Labour red. I admit that my criticism of leaflets is normally aimed at the chronic untruths that the Liberal Democrats endlessly put out, but I was very surprised by the leaflet that popped through my letterbox today.

“I respectfully suggest that all political parties be clear about the authorship of all their campaign materials and stop trying to be seen as something else. If you campaign for any political party you should be proud to do so, and not feel the need to revert to petty tricks or subterfuge.”


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Responses to Guildford Labour Accuse Tories of Stealing Their Style

  1. Jim Allen Reply

    October 30, 2023 at 12:09 pm

    Please, will all the political parties stop bickering and work together for the betterment of the communities of Guildford.

  2. Ben Paton Reply

    November 1, 2023 at 11:27 am

    Labour should take comfort from Oscar Wilde’s words: “Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery.”

    It will gain strength just by being decent and honest.

  3. Ben Paton Reply

    November 1, 2023 at 11:45 am

    Here’s a truly great Labour speech:-

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