This week, we read a blog online about the decline of political clubs as a political force. The article argued that customers were no longer joining because they wanted to share political opinions.
Instead, they saw political clubs as a way of making sure that the people they were socialising with were their type of people.
If this is true, we wonder whether this is a worrying trend for political clubs, or whether joining together likeminded people has always been the name of the game.
It does raise an interesting discussion about the purpose of a club.
Not long ago, we wrote a blog about the issues facing grassroots football and the steady decline in playing numbers. If a football club’s playing numbers are dwindling, it will have to find another way to attract customers. The ‘point’ of the club may cease to be solely football and instead become a mix between a sport and social club.
The same argument could be made for political clubs. Once, these great establishments were there to recruit the next set of political activists, or build pressure to affect the next great political change.
If that’s no longer the case, how are political clubs going to change to sell themselves in the future?
As a specialist insurance broker to political clubs, with partnerships with the top political club associations, we’re proud of their longstanding tradition. We’re confident that however branded, political clubs will always be a strong part of the pub and club scene.
Political clubs could be at a crossroads, but with two very positive potential routes to choose from. On the one hand, they could revert to type and bring politics right to the top of the agenda.
In an age of Brexit, austerity and social justice, political allegiance has never been so important.
On the other hand, political clubs are the hub of many communities, and not necessarily because of their left or right leaning. People love the tradition of labour, liberal and conservative clubs. They love the fact they know they won’t pay an arm or leg for a beer. They love that when they drink on an evening, they’ll be surrounded by like-minded friends.
Whichever way they choose, political clubs will continue to be a place for communities to come together.