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The Clean Slate Campaign

The Clean Slate Campaign

A millennium campaign in the UK in 1999
The Clean Slate Campaign was an initiative to encourage people in the UK to think more deeply about how they wanted to mark the start of a new Millennium. Why not have a think as well as a party? The Campaign invited everyone - during 1999 - to take a practical step to wipe their slate clean in whatever way they wanted to. 80 public figures and private individuals lent their name as Patrons, leading to extensive media coverage. You can read about the Campaign, its origins, stories shared by people who made the Promise, and much more, on this page and by following the links.
I promise to take at least one practical step during 1999 towards wiping my slate clean.

Stories of cleaning the slate

Recently I lost my temper with a woman in a council department. The next day I took a box of chocolates to her office! (Anon, Merseyside) I have today written a long overdue letter of reconciliation, bridging a gap of several years, by asking forgiveness for my lack of care and lack of attempt to heal the breach between me and two of my friends. (Stella Weaver, Croydon)

The Patrons

80 public figures and private individuals lent their names as patrons of the Campaign. Among them were religious leaders such as Cardinal Basil Hume and the Chief Rabbi, sports personalities like Bobby Charlton and Gary Lineker, and journalists and politicians.

Although not a patron, the Rt Hon David Blunkett MP, Secretary of State for Education, sent a message: "I am very happy to support this excellent initiative. Everyone can think of something that they either should have done, or should not have done, and the Clean Slate Campaign provides an opportunity not only to start afresh, but to learn from the past and behave differently in the future."

Special event in London

Almost half the 80 patrons of the Clean Slate Campaign gathered in London on 1 December 1999 to endorse the event to the media. Read the report here

I'm writing to a friend about my 'put down' of him years ago. The thought of it occupies too much RAM.

Oxford Clean Slate Week

Designed as a focus on the Clean Slate theme for all the people of Oxfordshire, this idea was launched at a reception in the Oxford Town Hall by the Lord Mayor of Oxford.

Reports and newsletters


How it was financed

The campaign cost £30,000. 80% of this sum was received in over 250 gifts from individuals - ranging from 20 pence to £1,000. An estimated further £35,000 was given in kind, through unremunerated professional services, design skills and print subsidy. A fund-raising dinner in Newcastle raised £1,100.

Expenditure was low, largely because so many services were given without charge. Schafline in Liverpool designed the logo without charge. Anderson Norton Design in London designed the Clean Slate Guide free; Gadsby and Mustoe Ltd in Sutton subsidised its printing. Linnells Solicitors in Oxford charged nothing for legal services. Hacker Young, auditors, London, audited the accounts without any fee. Many days of professional marketing advice were donated. The executive committee charged nothing for their work.