Since May in Gateshead we have been running the petition against the axing of the Post Office Card Account. So far we have collected over 3000 signatures. The technique we use is one I recommend to all campaigners.
We deliver the petition form in the morning dated for that day, and explain on the form that we will return at a specific time on the same day to collect them from letter boxes. Last year we collected 16,000 signatures on a petition against an opencast proposal in Blaydon constituency. 6000 were collected by the technique described above (the rest were collected mainly by the National Trust and some by shops which had copied of our petition.)
With the Post Office petition, our intention is to keep it running until the new year and hopefully double the number of signatures we have at the moment.
This system also brings in a great deal of contact data and has been the main way we have built up a list of over 900 email addresses in Blaydon constituency. I use the list to send a monthly email newsletter which is well received.
So, as I did not have to be in London today, I was able to deliver 380 petitions (plus a Focus leaflet) in 3 patches in my ward where we currently don't have deliverers. And I returned this evening to collect 105 replies containing over 160 signatures, 6 more email addresses and a big set of phone numbers.
A useful exercise and if Lib Dem campaigners are not doing the Post Office petition and not using the deliver and collect system or some other variation, why not? It works very well for me.
The additional signatures will be added to the report I will be giving tomorrow at the Blaydon constituency branch meeting about the Post Office campaign. I'll stick my neck out and say I think we will have over 1000 emails on the distribution list by mid November.
Anyway, having just finished the next edition of our members' newsletter "The Gateshead Democrat" (ready to be handed out to those attending the Blaydon meeting) I have now discovered it is nearly 1.30am. So time I went to bed.