Is it a bird, is it a plane, no it’s … Stratford4Europe’s new, state-of-the-art campaign weapon, the “Battle-Bike”!
On Saturday the 6th May heads turned and more than a few foreign tourists looked a little bemused as the specially commissioned Battle-Bike was unveiled to the people of Stratford for the very first time. The high-tech campaign vehicle is a mobile street stall complete with display areas, a merchandising counter, storage space and two masts emblazoned with flags and festooned with balloons.
The Battle-Bike, the brainchild and work of two of Stratford4Europe’s members, is Stratford4Europe’s answer to the political parties’ campaign buses we see on our television screens at election time. Stratford4Europe’s Battle-Bike, however, has the advantage of being environmentally friendly, carbon neutral and of enabling Stratford4Europe to campaign in parts of the Stratford District that other campaigns find hard to reach.
Although Stratford4Europe is not a political party and is not fielding any candidates in the forthcoming election, it is campaigning to encourage as many people as possible, and especially young people, to vote. It is also campaigning to persuade voters to keep the kind of relationship they would like Britain to have with the rest of the European Union uppermost in their minds when they go to the ballot box.
On Saturday members of the group spent the day giving out leaflets, signing up new supporters and engaging members of the public in some enthusiastic debate. They were also busy advertising two forthcoming events, visiting speakers, Brendan Donnelly and Professor Michael Dougan of ‘seven million hits on YouTube fame’, who will be appearing in Stratford on the 24th and 31st May.
Jonathan Baker, the Chair of Stratford4Europe said,
‘We had an amazingly positive reception from the public on Saturday and the Battle-Bike exceeded all our expectations. As well as being a really practical campaigning tool it was superb in attracting people to come and speak to us. The only drawbacks were the number of tourists crowding around us seeking pictures of the Battle-Bus with our distinctive Shakespeare logo, and the incident at the start of the day when Duncan our intrepid ‘driver’ had a bit of a wobble making us think for a brief moment that our new, secret weapon was going to end up in the river!’
Following the success of Saturday, the group now plan to take the Battle-Bike on a campaigning tour of the district so, watch out, it could soon be making an appearance near you!