Tale of 2 cities: May’s tiny, long-faced Bolton ‘crowd’ – Corbyn mobbed in Croydon

corbyn croydon
Jeremy Corbyn – out and about, mobbed for selfies and autographs

The BBC featured an electioneering speech from Theresa May today – in Bolton. As they did with Cameron in 2015, the camera angles were kept tight on May and a few stalwarts around her to give the impression of a crowd. Except that at the end, you could tell there were barely enough hands clapping to fill a clock face.

It was Bolton, after all. A less flattering shot showed she had hardly anyone there and the few lost souls who’d wandered in thinking it’s normally bingo on a Wednesday looked like they’d just been told they had a terminal illness. The placards they were holding up bore the, er, snappy slogan “Strong and stable leadership in the national interest”.

Trips off the tongue, eh? About as staid, pompous and self-important as May herself.

So the SKWAWKBOX thought we’d enhance that less flattering shot a little and improve on the slogan by adding just a little of what the electorate would really like to ask, or say to, the unelected and fear-driven PM. If the image doesn’t render large enough on your screen, zoom in on a smartphone or right-click and open in a new tab if on a PC/laptop:

may tiny crowd

If our edit tickles your fancy, feel free to use it. They must have scoured the area over a 30-mile radius to scrape even that many together prepared to be seen behind May, so they deserve a bit of limelight..

In contrast with May’s dry-as-dust and stage-managed indoor event, to which she travelled in a bullet-proof car, the supposedly unpopular Corbyn was in Croydon.

Not indoors and stage managed but out on the streets. His crowd didn’t need any kind camera angles – they were too busy mobbing him and trying to get autographs and selfies:

corbyn croydon crowd
If Carlsberg made crowds – and politicians…

His speech wasn’t dull as ditchwater, either:


Meanwhile, May was leaving in her armoured car – but it couldn’t protect her from what the people of Bolton really thought of her. We’ll let a Boltonian driver have the last word, as reported by ITV’s Daniel Hewitt:

If the media try to tell you Corbyn and Labour have no hope in this election, they’re lying to you.

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  1. Corbyn is so obviously in his element while May shits herself in her armoured car, too frightened to even have a TV debate.

    Tory landslide my arse. It’s going to be the complete opposite.

  2. To me, just having Labour win the GE isn’t enough. I would like to see the Tory party decimated beyond the levels of the Lib Dems after the coalition. They are not fit to even serve as an opposition party, although the shadow term applies to them perfectly.

  3. The Tories are at 48% in the most recent poll. I’d love to think it’s possible, but how on earth can that be turned round in such a short time? Not even Truman managed that in a longer period – and he partly turned around a near-hopeless position by mounting fierce personal attacks on Dewey. Corbyn is unlikely to take that route.

    As I said elsewhere, it would be better to be prepare to fight the inevitable right-wing backlash and the political landscape we are likely to face after the election than pretend we are going to win this election.

    1. As Hitchens said, polls exist to shape opinion not measure it – and they’ve been badly wrong a lot. Only real poll is the GE. Spread the word, emphasise the positive – we have it and they don’t.

    2. Every where JC goes, he gets mobbed. His speeches draw massive crowds, and he gets a standing ovation every time. His public appearances don’t have to be managed, unless that means crowd control!

      I simply do not believe the polls, anymore than I believe the trashy headlines from the rags about Corbyn either. It’s all propaganda.

      We do have a hard fight ahead, let’s never feel complacent, but this is a time for renewal. There have been very influential international bodies been predicting Corbyn will be our next prime minister for some months now. We are not “pretending” Labour can win, a lot of us are working to make that happen. If you aren’t doing that, then you need to stand back and let us get on with the job in hand.

    3. Polls are also owned / heavily influenced by crooked Tories, hence the highly dubious but highly publicised results. The 5 press billionaires are simply having their lackeys do their dirty work.

    4. Is it really credible that the Tories – the Tories! – are at forty-eight percent? They’ve pushed their con-trick too far.

  4. I watched the May speech in Bolton on Live on Sky News. Haven’t seen any clips of it elsewhere so don’t know if they were cut short. But, towards the end one she pointedly turns her back on the proffered hand of an obviously Jewish gentleman. Now, what do you think the media would have had to say about that if it had been JC (or another Labour politician!)?

  5. Interesting to see the ‘uphooder’ of law & order stopping to tackle the disgruntled chap. Anyone would think we’re not allowed to disapprove of the lying pointless cow…

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