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South West Regional Conference

On Saturday 29th February 2020, the Co-operative Party’s South West regional conference will take place in Bristol.

There will be a particular focus on some of the big challenges our economy and communities face across the region, a spotlight on Co-operative Party’s policy platform for 2020, as well as showcasing co-operative solutions that can be expanded and supported to build the fairer future we so desperately need.


10.00 registration opens

10.30 Welcome and introduction by Sue Milestone, Co-op Party NEC South West representative

10.45 Policy Debate 1: Corporate Governance: panel Q&A on ensuring businesses work for the common good and how good governance is critical to creating a fairer economy.  As co-operators we want to see an economy that is characterised by fairness and this means all businesses playing their part. Speakers include:

  • Fran Boait, Positive Money
  • James Butler, the Co-operative Party

11.45 Be a Co-operative Councillor: how to be nominated as a candidate, manifesto ideas and support (in association with Community the Union) with speakers:

  • Cllr Doina Cornell, Leader Stroud District Council
  • Kate Dearden, Community The Union
  • Fran Boait, PPC for Gloucester in 2019 General Election
  • Cllr Emma Hoddinott, Co-op Party Local Government Officer

12.30 Lunch (sandwiches are included in your registration fee)

13:15 Co-operative Party campaigning: launching the Party’s 2020 campaigns on community safety and listing community assets

  • Cllr Asher Craig, Deputy Mayor of Bristol with responsibility for Communities, Equalities and Public Health
  • James Butler, Co-op Party Campaigns Officer

14:15 Community Business & Co-operative Growth: Q&A with representatives from successful local independent co-ops and co-operative development agencies.  Speakers include:

  • Jo White, Co-operative Futures
  • Brian Titley, Co-operative Assistance Network Ltd

14:45 Policy Debate 2: Connecting Communities from buses to broadband: panel Q&A to discuss how across the country, co-operative, social enterprise and other forms of not-for-profit bus operators are proving that it’s possible to run transport services that are affordable and responsive to the needs of local people.  Plus co-operative solutions to tackle digital exclusion – with examples of community broadband and the rural communities that now enjoy access they would otherwise have been denied. Speakers include:

  • Kate Whittle,  GO-OP Co-operative Ltd
  • Roisin Tobin-Brooke, Operations Manager, Bristol community ferry boats
  • Georgia O’Brien, Co-op Party Digital and Communications Officer

15:45 Summing up and next steps


The nearest mainline train station is Bristol Temple Meads Train Station.  From there, you can  travel by bus number 8 – which runs every 10 minutes from the station – and travels through via the Centre, Park Street and Clifton Triangle and stops directly outside of Engineers’ House. The bus fare is £2 per journey.

There are a number of onsite car parking spaces available.  These are firstly reserved for disabled attendees. There are a large number of spaces available on the adjacent roads.  No parking permits are required on weekends.


£10 (£5 concessions), which includes a sandwich lunch.

This event is open to non-members, so please share with friends, Labour Party and trade union colleagues.  You must register in advance to secure a place.

To register:


29th Feb
10:30 am - 4:00 pm


Co-operative Party Events
020 7367 4150


Engineers House
The Promenade
Clifton Down, Bristol BS8 3NB United Kingdom

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