How to write the perfect speech for a political party conference

Whether you’re the leader of Labour or the Tories, Ukip or Lib Dems, this definitive conference speech will have your audience gurgling for more

David Cameron during his speech

David Cameron gives his speech at Conservative party conference, 2014 Photo: Getty Images

So, to save speech-writers time in future, we present a template for the definitive conference speech – usable by any leader, from any party.


Thank you for that terrific welcome. Here’s a joke that was topical at the time it was written for me. There. Good, wasn’t it? I think you’ll agree that it really demonstrated my “human” side!

Now, let me tell you a story. The other day, I was walking in a public place when I met an ordinary person. That ordinary person’s name was NAME OF ORDINARY PERSON. And do you know what NAME OF ORDINARY PERSON said to me? NAME OF ORDINARY PERSON said, “I wish there was a party whose policies were whatever policies your party is about to unveil at your party’s conference.”

And I said, “Funny you should say that, NAME OF ORDINARY PERSON. Because there is a party whose policies are whatever policies my party is about to unveil at my party’s conference. It’s my party.”

And NAME OF ORDINARY PERSON said, “Wow, that’s amazing. Make sure you quote me in your conference speech, to give the impression that my view is representative of the wider public’s.”

Friends, our party is the best party because our party has the best values. Uniquely, our party believes in hope, opportunity, decency and prosperity. Unlike NAME OF RIVAL PARTY, who believe in the opposite of all those things. Because – and let’s be frank here – people from NAME OF RIVAL PARTY are rubbish, and you, my audience, are inherently superior to them!

[Pause for standing ovation.]

We are a party that believes in young people. But also in old people. And also in people whose age falls somewhere in between. Because let’s not forget: those people used to be young people. And one day, they will be old people. Unless they die in the meantime. But even if they do, our party will still believe in them.

And that’s why I say to you this. Something something something, our NHS!

[Pause for standing ovation.]

Friends, the truth is, I love Britain*. I love Britain because Britain Britain Britain Britain Britain Britain Britain Britain. As Winston Churchill** once said: “Britain.” And I’m not ashamed to admit that those words bring a tear to my eye.

Now here’s a revealing insight into the real me. I love my spouse, my children, my parents, and the place where I grew up. I’m sorry – but that’s just the kind of person I am, take it or leave it.

Right, that’s about an hour. Brief thematic summary, remember the slogan, turn up the volume, don’t forget to wave!

Thank you.

* SNP speech-writers: change to “Scotland”.

** SNP speech-writers: change to “Rabbie Burns”.

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