RISE, Scotland’s far-left alliance, yesterday promised to carry on after a brutal first Holyrood election and shift its focus to community campaigning.

The message emerged after the party held its first post mortem since polling just 0.5 per cent on the regional list on May 5, coming narrowly behind the Scottish Christian Party.

Despite high hopes, RISE were also out-polled by Tommy Sheridan’s rival Solidarity party.

RISE organisers and candidates have since penned a series of self-critical articles, acknowledging shortcomings in their campaign organisation, strategy and messages.

A key mistake was demanding a rapid second referendum, as the SNP effectively had the pro-independence votes sewn up, and RISE failed to make headway on the issue.

RISE also struggled with a low budget, a low profile and largely unknown candidates.

Around 40 delegates at RISE’s National Assembly yesterday agreed to boost its profile through grassroots campaigns “to connect with people who feel they do not have a voice”.

Plans include campaigns against PFI and benefit sanctions, a greater presence on university and college campuses, “a radical movement of direct action” and a possible “social hub” to host events, music, films and debate; a RISE conference is planned later this year.

National organiser Jonathon Shafi said the mood had been “reflective but optimistic in tone”.

He said: “We will be getting down to work on local campaigns and extra-parliamentary movements where we want to be part of winning victories at a local level and leftwards pressure on a national stage. "We are instituting a programme of popular education, activist training and building links with others on the left outside of our immediate circles.”

Standing for Respect, Independence, Socialism and Environmentalism, RISE was formed last autumn as an electoral alliance modelled on Greece’s Syriza movement.

Its building blocks were the Radical Independence Campaign, the Scottish Left Project and the Scottish Socialist Party (SSP), which chose not to contest the election in its own right.

The SSP executive will recommend continuing in RISE next month.

SSP co-leader Colin Fox said: “Our party remains committed to working with others to unite the Scottish left to advance socialist solutions. The Tories will be pressuring the SNP as never before to back Cameron’s neo-liberal economic policies and his attacks on jobs, wages and public services. It is imperative this agenda is countered effectively by a broad united Left in Scotland to resist cuts, sackings and all concessions to Ruth Davidson’s tartan Tories.”

Glasgow candidate Cat Boyd added: “We want to continue working alongside a broad left movement. We'll make sure ordinary people are not left to pay the price for crises created by capitalism and exacerbated by political indifference.”