Brown's speech - what the papers make of it
Thought I'd go for a trawl through those with op-ed online and find out:
The Chancellor put up a strong performance. So it was a pity to see it overshadowed by Cherie Blair’s farcical one-woman protest.
If Mr Brown was trying to place a vast plaster over Labour’s (self-inflicted) wounds, he largely succeeded.
"Gordon Brown attempted a spectacular evolution yesterday - and although he did not fully succeed, his address to Labour's conference left him as the frontrunner, still, to succeed Tony Blair. A poor speech might have broken him and a brilliant one might have made his arrival in Number 10 a formality. This one was neither of those things.."
Gordon Brown's speech to the Labour Party conference was not, despite all the advance billing, the speech of his life: it was nothing like the prime-ministerial tour de force he had delivered the year before. But then it did not need to be. It was a thoroughly competent and confident performance, which did more than enough to stake his claim to be the party's next leader and the country's next Prime Minister.
"Like most job applications, Gordon Brown's speech yesterday to the Labour Party conference in Manchester attempted to tell his audience what it wanted to hear. So the Chancellor was at pains to mend fences (in public at least) with Tony Blair, to reassure the Blairites that he was still New Labour to the core".
He certainly avoided the sort of banana skin that upended David Davis's chances of leading the Conservatives last year, but did he do enough to see off potential challengers and look like the man to take on David Cameron? The carefully stage-managed 175-second standing ovation cannot be regarded as a litmus test,
Then there was the text of the speech itself. Given the importance of the occasion (billed as "the speech of his life" by the media), it should have been possible for Mr Brown and his speechwriters to produce prose that was less tired and hackneyed...He would, he said, "relish the opportunity to take on David Cameron", but there was precious little in this speech that would give Mr Cameron cause for concern.