Awkward member-numbers question the Tories really don’t seem to want to answer

Last weekend, Tory chair Brandon Lewis claimed that the number of Conservative party members had ‘soared’ to 124,000 – double most estimates:

tg tory members.png

Most mainstream media have been mapping a continual – and entirely understandable – downward slide:

tory members msm.png

However, there’s a complication – a Tory complication – for the Conservatives’ attempted boast of ‘soaring’ membership.

They’ve made it before – recently. And bigger.

Three and a half years ago, ConservativeHome published an article – by its executive editor, no less – about an increase in Tory membership of almost twelve percent in a single year: up from 134,000 in 2013 to 149,800 in 2014:

conhome memb.png

In other words, the Tories have already claimed higher membership than the 124,000 it has supposedly ‘soared’ to now – twice. In 2013 they claimed to have 134,000 – and a year later, they said it had jumped to almost 150,000.

So it’s hard to see how it ‘soared’ downwards to 124,000 – unless it had positively plummeted in the intervening years.

So we asked Conservative HQ (CCHQ):

Today the Conservative party announced membership had ‘soared’ to 124,000. Three and a half years ago, according to Conservative Home and Grant Shapps, it had increased to 149,800:


Please explain the apparent logical discrepancy by 10am Weds

By late Thursday, in spite of reminders and requests for a response by return, CCHQ had not provided any response.


The Tories have a track record of big and unlikely claims about membership increases – and the current number claimed seems to have fallen by over 25,000 compared to the 2014 claim.

You’d almost think they were just making up numbers that nobody outside the Tory party can check.

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  1. “”You’d almost think they were just making up numbers that nobody outside the Tory party can check.”

    I can’t see anyone being very surprised, it’s what Tories do.

    1. That’s the power and influence of the right wing MSM for you and of course Cambridge Analytica .
      That’s why it’s vital we have blogs like this and others ones to help get the balancing view and arguments out into the real world

      1. and the result of our rotten electoral system. they only need just over a quarter of the vote! Labour MUST change this.

  2. Sure it was grant shapps, and not seb fox or michael green made that 149k members claim?

  3. Tory membership figures are arrived at by a process no better than Oceania’s officially pronounced choco ration. There is not, now, even the pretence of consistency.

    I’d be surprised if actual Tory party membership is even half the claimed figure, if that!

  4. Buy cheap sell high!
    That’s the Tories for you, “Liars, Cheats and Vagabonds, drifting double-dealers”, the lot of em!

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