The Alternative UK, Flatpack Democracy & Campfire Convention at Frome


We're planning some actions in the last few weeks running up to (& immediately after) the June 9th UK General Election. One of them is a partner event with some of our favourite and kindred organisations, in the space of "reimagining politics" - Campfire Convention, Flatpack Democracy and A/UK.

The event (details and tickets here) is taking place in Frome, the heartland of Flatpack's operations. It's sold out, but we'll be mediating the content back to you over the next few weeks. Here's some of the blurb:


"Both Campfire Convention and The Alternative UK have emerged in response to a strong sense that people want to talk and discuss the changes we face – both local and global - more than ever.  And they also want those discussions to go somewhere – to real action and real opportunities to carry ideas forward into change.   Over the last few months Campfire Conversations have burst into life in a range of venues – with full back up of an evolving platform that enables initiatives to be further developed and explored beyond the event.  In parallel, The Alternative UK’s site with daily blogs and links to positive alternatives from around the world, is attracting widespread attention.

The aim of the evening’s event is for Frome to meet these offers.  For a group of us to come together to share ideas, benefitting from the work and experience these two new platforms are creating and play our part in their early evolution.  And given the proximity of a national election, the focus will be on ‘Re-imagining Politics’.

Who runs our world and how they do it seems in greater flux than ever before.   In the aftermath of the Brexit vote and Donald Trump’s victory many of us seek some sense of stability and understanding.  The systems we currently have for democratic representation are badly failing us.  All too often we are pushed into voting against something when what we want is ways to put in place the many ideas there are for a positive future.

Locally Frome has developed an enviable record for doing things differently, with Independents for Frome’s approach to participatory democracy.  While this has helped inspire a number of other revolutionary towns – partly through Peter Macfadyen’s ‘Flatpack Democracy’ – it’s currently a model aimed very much at the local level.   The Campfire Convention website is an evolving conflagration of engagement opportunities with its new Trailblazer politics movement gaining momentum. And Alternative UK is developing a crowd-sourced manifesto to share and realise ideas with others both locally and beyond.  

Can we step out of boxes and bubbles to take ideas from the local to inform wider change in a world where democracy simply isn’t working? What could a new politics look and feel like?

The Frome/Campfire/Alternative evening aims to provide a structure for those present andto listen to the ideas of others and to find our own.  Then we’ll move on to share thoughts on how to embed these ideas in the local – to move beyond another ‘talking shop’.