As part of YBF’s tenth anniversary celebrations, testimonials were obtained from a number of prominent political figures in Britain and elsewhere who wished to congratulate YBF on its first ten years of achievements – and to wish us well as we embark on our second decade…
As Margaret Thatcher observed, “Politics at its purest is philosophy in action”. Those who address YBF tend not to be those battered by the winds of prevailing opinion or contemporary orthodoxy. But rather those who believe in the eternal truths of Conservatism that speak to the human heart. I believe all young people who have attended YBF events in these last ten years have found the experience enriching and the value enduring.
I will be proud to be with Donal and the YBF team again this year as we embark on our second decade”.
YBF has played an important role in the past decade in the growth of a broader conservative movement in Britain. The development of such a movement – independent of the Conservative Party and yet sharing many of its aims and ideals – has helped to change the climate of debate among young and old on a range of issues and policies and represents the flourishing of civil society.
I remember from my time as a young conservative activist how important it was to develop friendships with my comrades-in-arms – and those alliances remain strong even to this day”.
Over the last decade, YBF provided a valuable service for young people on the right of British politics, and long may that continue. Your leadership of this organisation has played no small part in its success, and I commend you for it.
I hope that YBF’s next ten years will be even more successful than its first.
My very best wishes to you, your team and the organisation as a whole”.
“This year we have been remembering Margaret Thatcher, the greatest post-war Conservative leader, and I have been struck by the resonance of her lessons for today – freedom, free markets and most importantly a renewed belief in ourselves as a country.
I hope that the YBF Activist Training Conference succeeds in bringing these and other compassionate conservative ideas to a new generation, and inspires them to become involved in their communities and politics”
Westminster is full of talkers and dreamers and schemers; but Donal Blaney and his friends turned out to be doers.
While others talked and dreamed and schemed, he quietly turned YBF into the foremost organisation for young people on the British Centre-Right.
YBF teaches people how to communicate, how to campaign, how to win the battle of ideas. I have found many of my members of staff and interns through it. And, indeed, many YBF alumni have now gone on to assume leadership positions in the conservative movement. Many more, I’m glad to say, have gone into the private sector.
For the best conservative is not the one who (as I do) holds elected office, but the one who makes things, sells things or otherwise performs a service to the rest of us, while retaining his conservative principles. For ten years, YBF has been sending out a growing corpus of such people. In ten more years, who knows where we’ll be?
Happy anniversary, comrades”.
Their work in ensuring that young minds are challenged with a balanced debate plays a vital part in shaping British politics for years to come.
They should be applauded in their efforts for educating young people in the principles of Conservatism.”