Progress | Centre-left Labour politics

Operation Flight

Operation Flight, as part of the Campaign for a Labour Majority, was a national campaign day in nine of the 106-target seats where the incumbent Conservative or Liberal Democrat member of parliament is stepping down. As the incumbent flies off, Progress flies in.

On Saturday 10 January, both a Progress strategy board representative and a member of staff, plus as many volunteers as we could muster, were be in each of these nine seats. We invited every Labour member, affiliated union member, supporter, and anyone else who wants to get this terrible government out, to come and join us.

Brent Central, Dawn Butler Willesden Green station, Walm Lane NW2 4QT
Cannock Chase, Janos Toth 11 Market Street, Hednesford Cannock WS12 1AY
Cardiff North, Mari Williams 13 Llangranog Road, Cardiff CF14 5BL
Dudley South, Natasha Millward Crossgate Road, Netherton DY2 0SY
Erewash, Catherine Atkinson Long Eaton train station, Tamworth Road, Long Eaton NG10 3GS
Hove, Peter Kyle 99 Church Road, Hove BN3 2BA
North Warwickshire, Mike O’Brien Tesco car park, Leicester Street, Bedworth CV12 8SY
Redcar, Anna Turley 10 Milbank Terrace, Redcar TS10 1ED
South Ribble, Veronica Bennett Fleece Inn pub, Liverpool Road, Penwortham, Preston PR1 9XD

Find out more

About – what is Operation Flight, Richard Angell explains

Which seats – mapping the challenge

Donate – if you couldn’t join us, support us campaigning in key seats

Liveblog – look back at the flight in action

Thank you to all those who joined us as we started the new year as we mean to go on; by campaigning for a Labour victory and chalking up wins for Ed Miliband.

Latest news

The final announcement from your in-flight team | 10 January 2015

As everyone passes through customs at the end of Operation Flight I want to stop and thank everyone who made this possible.

First, your cabin crew, the Progress staff and volunteers who have taken a lead in the nine seats Labour is targeting where the incumbent Conservative or Liberal Democrat member of parliament is standing down.

In addition the 15 Labour MPs and MEPs, especially our chair John Woodcock MP, who took the captain’s seat and led the campaign days from the front.

Close behind were the Progress strategy board members – those you have decided to elect to lead the organisation. Based across the country, many doing the hard graft of being a councillor, they show Progress at its best.

The support from Labour Students, LGBT Labour and Community Union as they pilled in behind was crucial to the success of the day and shows how vibrant our movement is.

The party staff – we have excellent organisers – they do our party and our politics proud and these events always take more organising that anyone ever acknowledges.

Finally the 213 volunteers who turn out in all weathers and knocked those doors. That is nearly 500 volunteer hours.

Together we started 4526 conversations. Broken down by seat that is:

Brent Central: 693
Cardiff North: 794
Cannock Chase: 413
Dudley South: 350
Erewash: 498
Hove: 930
North Warwickshire: 202
Redcar: 192
South Ribble: 454

Our candidates across the country are the heros of this election campaign. I do not know anyone in the 106 target list that is not going above and beyond to get Labour that extra MP. Everyone in Progress was proud to be out campaigning with their #OpFlight Labour candidate. They have all had different flight paths to Labour but the destination is the same: a one-term Tory government brought to an end and a Labour majority to make this country fairer, stronger and working for all.

This week our leader Ed Miliband promised we would make four million conversations. In just nine seats we started well over 4,000 today. Lots done, lots to be done but either way bring on 7 May.


Richard Angell is director of Progress

Live departures board open | 9 January 2015

Ahead of tomorrow’s flight, please keep up to date with your seat information online:

Let the conversations begin | 8 January 2015

Let the conversations begin Finn McGoldrick looks forward to the opportunity to have many convesations on the doorstep with Labour Students. Join them on Operation Flight here.

Government – our ability to convert argument into action | 6 January 2015

Government – our ability to convert argument into action Tristram Hunt MP outlines the springboard opportunity that Operation Flight has to gathering support for a Labour government. Join him on Operation Flight here.

There is no better time than now to get campaigning | 5 January 2015

There is no better time than now to get campaigning Tom Maisey on the difference campaigning can make. Join his Operation Flight campaign day here.

Join Progress chair, John Woodcock MP in Dudley South for Operation Flight | 19 December 2014

Join Alison McGovern MP in Cannock Chase for Operation Flight | 18 December 2014

Join Toby Perkins MP in Erewash for Operation Flight | 18 December 2014

A view from Brent | 17 December 2014

‘A view from Brent’ Dawn Butler outlines her approach to the challenge of winning Brent Central for Labour. Join her Operation Flight campaign day here.

Battleground Cannock Chase | 17 December 2014

‘Battleground Cannock Chase’ Janos Toth describes his fight to retake Cannock Chase for Labour. Join his Operation Flight campaign day here.

Four weeks to go until Operation Flight | 10 December 2014

‘Four weeks to go until Operation Flight’ Peter Kyle shares his experiences of re-engaging with local residents to represent Hove and Portslade. Join his Operation Flight campaign day here.

‘Make it Mari’ | 28 November 2014

‘Make it Mari’ Mari Williams on her campaign to take Cardiff North back for Labour. Join her Operation Flight campaign day here.

Progress’ launches new campaign to capitalise on the coalition MPs abandoning their seats | 27 November 2014

Incumbency matters The ‘sophomore surge’ could stymie Labour’s path back to power, warns Peter Kellner

Operation Flight Richard Angell explains Progress’ new campaign to capitalise on the coalition MPs abandoning their seats

Fight or flight Which seats are first-time coalition MPs vacating? Lewis Baston runs through the targets on Operation Flight’s hitlist

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It takes time, commitment and money to build a fight against the forces of conservatism. If you value the work Progress does, please support us by becoming a member, subscriber or donating.

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Richard Angell

is director of Progress

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