This was an important conference for UKIP as the next election campaign is going to be very big. UKIP is in a position to play an important part and, possibly forcing a hung Parliament. Contrary to what some politicians (such as Ken Clarke) say, that would not be a disaster. The real disaster would be one of the main parties winning with a big enough majority to last five years in office.
Lord Pearson ended the conference with a highly successful speech that tackled the main issues: how to deal with criticisms of UKIP and the sort of questions candidates are likely to hear while canvassing. The full text of the speech is here.
There was a good media attendance. UKIP is now part of the main news cycle. Sky showed the speech in full; the BBC showed excerpts; there are reports in all the main newspapers and on the main media outlets. UKIP and what it says can no longer be ignored.
Tomorrow Financial Times will carry a long interview (one of their Lunch with ... series) with Lord Pearson of Ranoch. It follows his career in business and in politics. There is little point in quoting excerpts. Read the whole thing. A word of warning, however. The cartoon attached to the article is terrible.