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Focus On Political Parties

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How are UK political parties organised?

Parties, as with other membership organisations, have a structure which gives roles to people within the organisation so that decisions can be taken about how the organisation works and its future direction and also to provide a framework within which members can be involved.

Parties, however, are different in that:-

        They need means to campaign and win elections.

        They constantly have to look at and update their policies, partly to take account of changing events.

        As well as the party in the country there is the Parliamentary Party which consists of the elected MPs and there has to be a relationship between the two arms of the party.

        There has to be a special role for the party Leader who has a high public profile and can be a potential Prime Minister or, in Coalition, a Deputy Prime Minister.

        Labour has a particular relationship with the Trade Unions. Those that are affiliated to the Labour Party, such as Unison or Unite, have roles within the party organisation.