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press release: ukactive

GE24: Debate debuts, campaign clangers and more on the way

10 Jun 2024
Miri Smith, Public Affairs and Policy Executive, ukactive / ukactive
The election campaign has intensified this week, with the first of the TV debates between the two primary candidates for Prime Minister crystalising the positions of both parties as we head into the middle of the campaign. However, the return of Nigel Farage as leader of Reform UK, continued low poll ratings, pushback against analysis of future tax rises and an apology over D-Day commemorations have done little to change the narrative of an upcoming change of Government.

Tuesday’s debate between Keir Starmer and Rishi Sunak was an opportunity for both men to deliver their pitch directly to the country. With limited time given to each question, there was very little insight into policy, with both leaders focusing on attacking the record and/or vision of the other. During a discussion on young people’s futures, Starmer did reference the importance of integrating health clubs within new developments as part of Labour’s plans.

It was suggested ahead of the debate that Sunak would need to land a knockout blow to salvage his campaign, and despite a YouGov poll immediately afterwards suggesting he shaded it, further analysis was far from conclusive. The next few days were dominated by differing views over the use of calculations of Labour’s tax plans, which may have pleased Conservative strategists, but the campaign remains dogged by problems.

Nigel Farage’s return as leader of Reform UK presents a further threat to the Conservative core vote, as evidenced by its expected vote share climbing in multiple midweek releases. And the week closed with an apology from the Prime Minister for leaving D-Day commemorations early for an interview with ITV – a move which is unlikely to play well with the very voters the Tory campaign has targeted from the beginning.

Specific policy announcements were few and far between, although Labour did reiterate its plan to expand the existing Apprenticeship Levy into a ‘Growth and Skills’ Levy. This change would allow firms to use up to 50% of their levy contributions for training through alternative routes, not just apprenticeships. Meanwhile, the Liberal Democrats pledged to reverse Conservative cuts to the Public Health Grant worth £1bn a year and echoed ukactive’s narrative that there can be no growth without health.

While the past week has seen plenty of competing claims about tax rises, all Parties appear to be avoiding discussion of the incredibly tight fiscal situation for the next Government. The Institute for Fiscal Studies argues that it is likely the next Chancellor will need to announce tax rises, public spending cuts or borrowing – or all the above – in order to stick within their pledge on fiscal rules. This will have a significant impact on the ambition set out in parties’ upcoming manifestos, and their plans when in Government.

Manifestos are set to be published next week, with Labour’s reportedly planned for Thursday. ukactive will be providing analysis on the manifestos at the end of next week. These are anticipated to be relatively light on detail, beyond that which the parties have already committed to, although we expect to see more detail on Labour’s plans around business rates reform.

As a reminder, ukactive’s General Election Toolkit is available for members containing useful informationtalking points and a template for members to use when engaging with their local Prospective Parliamentary Candidates (PPCs). ukactive is continuing its engagement with the central teams of the main political parties, the teams around party leaders, the media, and other industry organisations. We have also been working with the National Sector Partners Group, to ensure we continue to lobby and campaign together, maximising our sector’s voice throughout the General Election.

To learn more, read our General Election statement here and download our policy paper. For more information or support, email: [email protected]

Miri Smith, Public Affairs and Policy Executive, ukactive


More press releases and updates from ukactive:
Scotland is the only nation in the UK where a larger proportion of adults admit they are less physically active than they were five years ago, according to a survey from ukactive.
And so the battle lines are drawn. After a few weeks of trading blows based on what each party may or may not offer on 4 July, with manifestos published all has been revealed.
A coalition of more than 200 bodies, athletes, businesses and charities across health, sport, recreation, and physical activity has written an open letter to party leaders calling on them to use the General Election to #TakeTheLead and commit to making the UK the most active nation in Europe.
ukactive has today (5 June) launched the 2024 Digital Futures consultation in partnership with the Digital Futures Advisory Group, offering fitness and leisure organisations, national governing bodies and active partnerships, free digital benchmarking and strategic recommendations.
As the General Election gets underway, ukactive is ramping up its engagement on all fronts. In the first blog of our new GE24 series, ukactive Director of Research, Policy and Communications, Clemency Lion reflects on the first week of the campaign trail and picks out some key areas of interest.   
ukactive: news from HCMmag.com and FitTechGlobal.com
More than 200 organisations and athletes in the UK have signed an open letter to party leaders to commit to making the nation the most active in Europe after next month’s General Election.
Improving physical strength and fitness, mental health and confidence are the main reasons for joining a health club, while cost, time and motivation are the main reasons for leaving.
UK Active has announced details of its annual health and fitness industry awards ceremony, which will take place in Birmingham on the evening of Thursday 3 October at the International Convention Centre.
The first annual Private Sector Benchmarking report was released today (27 March). A collaboration between UK Active and 4Global, the aim of the research is to provide accurate insight into the state of UK-based private sector health clubs.
In a soft power exercise, politicians in the UK have been invited to take part in a challenge which encourages them to be more active, while raising awareness of the benefits of physical activity.
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ukactive
Tel: 020 8158 9700
Address: The Bloomsbury Building, 10 Bloomsbury Way, London, WC1A 2SL, United Kingdom
Huw Edwards, CEO
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press release: ukactive

GE24: Debate debuts, campaign clangers and more on the way

10 Jun 2024
Miri Smith, Public Affairs and Policy Executive, ukactive / ukactive
The election campaign has intensified this week, with the first of the TV debates between the two primary candidates for Prime Minister crystalising the positions of both parties as we head into the middle of the campaign. However, the return of Nigel Farage as leader of Reform UK, continued low poll ratings, pushback against analysis of future tax rises and an apology over D-Day commemorations have done little to change the narrative of an upcoming change of Government.

Tuesday’s debate between Keir Starmer and Rishi Sunak was an opportunity for both men to deliver their pitch directly to the country. With limited time given to each question, there was very little insight into policy, with both leaders focusing on attacking the record and/or vision of the other. During a discussion on young people’s futures, Starmer did reference the importance of integrating health clubs within new developments as part of Labour’s plans.

It was suggested ahead of the debate that Sunak would need to land a knockout blow to salvage his campaign, and despite a YouGov poll immediately afterwards suggesting he shaded it, further analysis was far from conclusive. The next few days were dominated by differing views over the use of calculations of Labour’s tax plans, which may have pleased Conservative strategists, but the campaign remains dogged by problems.

Nigel Farage’s return as leader of Reform UK presents a further threat to the Conservative core vote, as evidenced by its expected vote share climbing in multiple midweek releases. And the week closed with an apology from the Prime Minister for leaving D-Day commemorations early for an interview with ITV – a move which is unlikely to play well with the very voters the Tory campaign has targeted from the beginning.

Specific policy announcements were few and far between, although Labour did reiterate its plan to expand the existing Apprenticeship Levy into a ‘Growth and Skills’ Levy. This change would allow firms to use up to 50% of their levy contributions for training through alternative routes, not just apprenticeships. Meanwhile, the Liberal Democrats pledged to reverse Conservative cuts to the Public Health Grant worth £1bn a year and echoed ukactive’s narrative that there can be no growth without health.

While the past week has seen plenty of competing claims about tax rises, all Parties appear to be avoiding discussion of the incredibly tight fiscal situation for the next Government. The Institute for Fiscal Studies argues that it is likely the next Chancellor will need to announce tax rises, public spending cuts or borrowing – or all the above – in order to stick within their pledge on fiscal rules. This will have a significant impact on the ambition set out in parties’ upcoming manifestos, and their plans when in Government.

Manifestos are set to be published next week, with Labour’s reportedly planned for Thursday. ukactive will be providing analysis on the manifestos at the end of next week. These are anticipated to be relatively light on detail, beyond that which the parties have already committed to, although we expect to see more detail on Labour’s plans around business rates reform.

As a reminder, ukactive’s General Election Toolkit is available for members containing useful informationtalking points and a template for members to use when engaging with their local Prospective Parliamentary Candidates (PPCs). ukactive is continuing its engagement with the central teams of the main political parties, the teams around party leaders, the media, and other industry organisations. We have also been working with the National Sector Partners Group, to ensure we continue to lobby and campaign together, maximising our sector’s voice throughout the General Election.

To learn more, read our General Election statement here and download our policy paper. For more information or support, email: [email protected]

Miri Smith, Public Affairs and Policy Executive, ukactive


More press releases and updates from ukactive:
Scotland is the only nation in the UK where a larger proportion of adults admit they are less physically active than they were five years ago, according to a survey from ukactive.
And so the battle lines are drawn. After a few weeks of trading blows based on what each party may or may not offer on 4 July, with manifestos published all has been revealed.
A coalition of more than 200 bodies, athletes, businesses and charities across health, sport, recreation, and physical activity has written an open letter to party leaders calling on them to use the General Election to #TakeTheLead and commit to making the UK the most active nation in Europe.
ukactive has today (5 June) launched the 2024 Digital Futures consultation in partnership with the Digital Futures Advisory Group, offering fitness and leisure organisations, national governing bodies and active partnerships, free digital benchmarking and strategic recommendations.
As the General Election gets underway, ukactive is ramping up its engagement on all fronts. In the first blog of our new GE24 series, ukactive Director of Research, Policy and Communications, Clemency Lion reflects on the first week of the campaign trail and picks out some key areas of interest.   
ukactive: news from HCMmag.com and FitTechGlobal.com
More than 200 organisations and athletes in the UK have signed an open letter to party leaders to commit to making the nation the most active in Europe after next month’s General Election.
Improving physical strength and fitness, mental health and confidence are the main reasons for joining a health club, while cost, time and motivation are the main reasons for leaving.
UK Active has announced details of its annual health and fitness industry awards ceremony, which will take place in Birmingham on the evening of Thursday 3 October at the International Convention Centre.
The first annual Private Sector Benchmarking report was released today (27 March). A collaboration between UK Active and 4Global, the aim of the research is to provide accurate insight into the state of UK-based private sector health clubs.
In a soft power exercise, politicians in the UK have been invited to take part in a challenge which encourages them to be more active, while raising awareness of the benefits of physical activity.
ukactive: featured in HCM and Fit Tech magazines
Insight: All welcome
As more trans women, trans men and non-binary people join health clubs, it’s time to work out a system where everyone feels included, protected and safe in the locker room. Kath Hudson reports
Life lessons: Huw Edwards
Remember when there was mass hostility about London hosting the 2012 Olympics? Huw Edwards, CEO of UK Active, was there. He talks to Kath Hudson about the lessons he learned
Consumer expectations are rising all the time, but nowhere more than in relation to digital. UK Active’s Dave Gerrish explains how the industry is shaping up
Kath Hudson talks to industry experts from around the world about their key takeaways from last year and their hopes for 2024
Industry insights: Predictions
Time are tough but tough times bring out the best in us. Kath Hudson asks some of the world’s top industry experts where they see the glimpses of blue sky
Life lessons: Dave Courteen
The author, industry veteran, UK Active board member and founder and CEO of Mosaic Spa and Health Clubs talks to Kath Hudson about the challenges of operating a high-end club when low-cost came on the scene
ukactive
Tel: 020 8158 9700
Address: The Bloomsbury Building, 10 Bloomsbury Way, London, WC1A 2SL, United Kingdom
Huw Edwards, CEO
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