Your browser is no longer supported

For the best possible experience using our website we recommend you upgrade to a newer version or another browser.

Your browser appears to have cookies disabled. For the best experience of this website, please enable cookies in your browser

We'll assume we have your consent to use cookies, for example so you won't need to log in each time you visit our site.
Learn more


  • Comment
New guidelines covering the way constituency associations select their priority parliamentary candidates have been ...
New guidelines covering the way constituency associations select their priority parliamentary candidates have been published by the Conservative Party board.

Changes in procedure mean that from now on candidates will make a presentation and face interview by the association selection committees. Associations will either consult with the community during selection, or hold a primary. And candidates will no longer make a big speech at their selection meeting.

The new format for the interviews should be a presentation of between 5 and 10 minutes, followed by 15 to 20 minutes of questions. In addition to a number of set questions, members of selection committees should be able to ask further questions.

At the end of this stage, a decision will be made on the number of applicants selection committees wish to proceed to the next stage. Selection committees shall recommend not less than 3, but ideally 4 to 6 candidates for interview by their Association executive councils.

If not opting for a primary selection, associations must consult the wider community at this stage. Before executive councils meet and interview the remaining applicants, non-party member representatives from the local community will have the chance to meet and interview them, scoring them on a range of skill areas and giving their overall impression of how suitable the applicants would be as the local candidate/MP. Their comments would help inform executive councils in deciding which 2 - 4 applicants should progress to the final round.

The special general meeting will be the opportunity for the full association membership to choose their next parliamentary candidate. There will be no set speech. Instead, each applicant will be interviewed separately by a designated moderator/interviewer, who could be a local journalist, community leader or relevant local professional, for up to 10 minutes.

At the end of the interview there will be a Q&A session for a maximum of 20 minutes. The moderator or interviewer will ask for questions from the floor and will have flexibility to explore the answers given by the applicants.

Conservative chairman Francis Maude said: 'These guidelines are further evidence that the party is changing. If we want to be more inclusive, we must actively seek to include. That is why we are changing the way we go about selecting candidates to make sure that we include the whole community a candidate seeks to represent.'

  • Comment

Have your say

You must sign in to make a comment

Please remember that the submission of any material is governed by our Terms and Conditions and by submitting material you confirm your agreement to these Terms and Conditions.

Links may be included in your comments but HTML is not permitted.