APPC chair’s conference rallying cry: You should all be proud!
Paul Bristow addressed lobbyists gathered in Manchester for Tory conference
The chair of the Association of Professional Political Consultants has urged lobbyists to back the industry body and "be proud of what you do".
Speaking at a drinks event for public affairs professionals attending the Conservative party conference, Paul Bristow stressed the importance of transparency and of the APPC’s code of conduct.
He also called on those gathered to defend and promote the industry, declaring: "Lobbying is really crucial. Not only for good government and good politics. It’s also crucial to ensure that we don’t have bad policies. Just ask Sadiq Khan and Uber.
"I really honestly believe that if we don’t promote what we do, then who will?"
Bristow is a former Tory aide and founder of 11-strong healthcare lobbying agency PB Consulting. He was elected as APPC chair earlier this year, taking over from Mark Glover.
In his Tory conference address at Brewdog bar in Manchester, just down the road from the conference centre, he continued: "Wouldn’t it be a bad world if the only people that were listened to were civil servants and the Daily Mail? So what we’ve got to do is to be proud of what we do.
"The lobbying industry is changing. It’s not just big corporations. A lot of lobbying is focused on the voluntary sector, on planning, healthcare and financial services.
"As chairman of the APPC I want to promote what I think is good lobbying. You should all be proud of what you do as lobbyists! Because if it’s not you who’s talking to government, talking to MPs, then who is it?
"So be proud of being a public affairs professional and enjoy being a member of the APPC. It is our industry body. Back it and be proud of it."