Digital, Facebook, Social media, Twitter, Voting

Mobilising through twitter power!

It’s amazing what people can do when they get together.

NEWS FLASH 24 NOV! We won! Read the story here.

Queen Elizabeth II Fields Challenge

On Wednesday 16 November we found out about the Queen Elizabeth II Fields Challenge. This is a superb initiative to celebrate the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee year and the London Olympics (happening just up the road from Kemp) in 2012 “to protect 2,012 outdoor recreational space in communities across the UK as a permanent living legacy of these landmark occasions.”

Neat idea, huh? 

Taking the ‘forever’ bit pretty seriously

This park is dedicated to the use and enjoyment of the people of East London forever

We especially liked the fact the competition was celebrating the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee because it was King George V and Queen Mary who dedicated King Edward Memorial Park when it was opened in 1922. The text of the dedication is shown above and we take the ‘forever’ bit pretty seriously.

Only problem being that the QE2 Fields Challenge was ending on Friday 18 November and had been running for almost a month and the more votes you had the more likely it was to get your field protected! And so far we only had 25 votes as not many people around here knew about it. And a lot of other fields had 300 votes. And it had taken them a month to achieve that. We had two days.



Swinging into action

Undeterred Save Kemp swung (creaked?)  into action and decided to use the power of Twitter and Facebook social media to drive our campaign. With less than 72 hours to go we needed to boost our vote and pretty quickly.

Pretty soon people were voting for King Edward Memorial Park like it wasn’t going to be around much longer – which is exactly what is going to happen if Thames Water have their way.

All we did was send out tweets from our @savekemp account asking people to vote for King Edward Memorial Park with a link to the voting page on the website. We used our Facebook page to coordinate Save Kemp supporters who were not tweeters. 

In turn everyone made use of their contacts by relaying the tweets or Facebook links or good old fashioned emails to their friends and colleagues.

The result was astounding.

Two and a half days to save the world

Within one hour on Wednesday 16th our votes were up by 21.

By 09.00 Thursday 17th the votes total was 100.

By 10.34 125

11.34 140 – could we get to 200?

14.18 205 votes but still way behind the leading field who had over 450!

16.27 237

17.39 255 and now our target was 500. Could we do it?

20.19 Thursday evening and we had hit 300. Could we hit 500 now?

Lord Sugar and Piers Morgan to the rescue

Then our very own eco warrior Toni Davey had the bright idea of tweeting Lord Sugar and Piers Morgan, explaining what we were doing and asking for a retweet. And they both did! What heros!

Voting surged on the back of these retweets by well known public figures with plenty of followers and by 23.10 we had hit 500 votes! Big thanks to Alan and Piers (Alright if we call you Alan?)

Friday 18th – the last day of voting.

At 07.21 we had hit 658 votes! Yippee! And we were wondering if we could hit the magic 1,000? Or was that being too ambitious? But for our park we thought it was worth a go.

At 09.18 we had hit 701 votes and the total was really rising quickly. Votes were coming in from Save Kemp supporters from all over the world: Estonia, New York, Bilbao, Tenerife, Italy, New Zealand, Australia, Kenya, Thailand and even Latvia and Singapore! Business colleagues who we had only ever exchanged emails with were voting for our park then forwarding our email to their colleagues and asking them to vote too. This was now a textbook case of social networking in action.

12.50 total was 871.

Ten minutes later total was 912.

13.00 total was 954! Then the counter on the QE2 Fields website seemed to get stuck on 999! Aaaaaargh!  Had we broken the website? Was it designed to deal with 1,000 votes and more?

Not to worry – by 14.19 the total was 1,016 votes. Whoop whoop as the Americans would say.

14.59 we had 1,026 votes. And still climbing.

Pub benevolence

By now we were helping our friends out whose green space are also at risk from Thames Water’s super sewer and asking people to vote for our mates over at Barn Elms.

By 17.15 that evening we had a rather nice total of 1,079 votes but it looked like our voting surge was over. Everyone going down the pub probably after work on a Friday. But we had still had a superb result from our friends and supporters. 

But then it picked up again! By 19.28 we had 1,101 and by 20.43 1,111. Everyone must have come back from the pub feeling extra benevolent.

Another voting surge was obviously happening with 1,208 votes by 21.47 and then at 23.05 1,434 votes. 

Would 1,500 be possible?

We have to admit to being a bit cheeky and tweeting that we were going for 1,500 earlier in the day – but we didn’t really think we could do it.

Then at 23.15 on Friday, only 45 minutes before the deadline, we hit 1,501. How good is that? Fantastic generosity from people all over the planet who wanted to help Save Kemp. You are all wonderful people and Toni Davey will buy everyone of you a vodka when she sees you…

At 23.42 we hit an incredible 1,636 votes! 1,636!!!!!!

And so to bed…. and waiting to see what the final result would be the next morning.

Mobilising East Enders wherever they might be

1,639. Which is pretty damn amazing.Yep, one thousand six hundred and thirty nine votes. 

Of course that is just the total for King Edward Memorial Park and there are lots of other fields in the running and we are sure lots more voting campaigns are going on. So now we have to wait until all the results are in for everyone and see what this means for Kemp.

And whatever good cause you are supporting we suggest you enlist social media to the fight.

Working together we managed to mobilise the East End – however far from home East Enders might be.

Check back on the site soon to see what happened next…. because at the moment we haven’t a clue!



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