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UK Independence Party

UK Independence Party
UK Independence Party
Leader Nigel Farage MEP
Deputy Leader Paul Nuttall MEP
Founded 3 September 1993
Headquarters Lexdrum House, Newton Abbot, Devon
Youth wing Young Independence
Membership (2014) 38,000+
Right-wing populism
Civic nationalism
Political position Right-wing
International affiliation None
European affiliation None
European Parliament group Europe of Freedom and Democracy
Colours Purple Yellow
House of Commons
House of Lords
European Parliament
Northern Ireland Assembly
Local government (UK)
Police and Crime Commissioner
London Assembly
Welsh Assembly
Scottish Parliament
Politics of the United Kingdom
Political parties
UK Independence Party
The UK Independence Party (UKIP, sometimes spelled Ukip /jukp/) is a Eurosceptic right-wing populist
political party in the United Kingdom, founded in 1993. The party describes itself in its constitution as a
"democratic, libertarian party" and, as of May 2014, is reported to have a membership of over 38,000.
In May 2014, UKIP became the first party in over a century other than Labour or the Conservatives to come first in a
United Kingdom wide election, with its performance in the 2014 European elections giving it 24 of the UK's 73 seats
in the European Parliament. Although UKIP has never won a seat in the House of Commons, it has three members in
the House of Lords and holds one seat in the Northern Ireland Assembly.
The party's performance in the 2013
local elections, when it came fourth in the number of council seats won and third in nationwide vote share, was
called the "biggest surge for a fourth party" in British politics since the Second World War.
The party's leader is Nigel Farage, who was re-elected to the post on 5 November 2010, having previously been
leader from 2006 to 2009. Farage is a founding member of the party, which emerged as the Anti-Federalist League in
1991, and has been a UKIP MEP since 1999.
Founding and early years
UKIP was founded in 1993 by Alan Sked and other members of the cross-party Anti-Federalist League, a political
party set up in November 1991 with the aim of fielding candidates opposed to the Maastricht Treaty. The nascent
party's primary objective was withdrawal of the United Kingdom from the European Union. It attracted a few
members of the Eurosceptic wing of the Conservative Party, which was split on the European question after the
pound was forced out of the European Exchange Rate Mechanism in 1992 and the struggle over ratification of the
Maastricht Treaty. UKIP candidates stood in the 1997 general election, but were overshadowed by James
Goldsmith's Referendum Party.
After the election, Sked resigned from the leadership and left the party because, he said, it contained members who
"are racist and have been infected by the far-right" and was "doomed to remain on the political fringes". However,
Goldsmith died soon after the election and the Referendum Party was dissolved, with a resulting influx of new UKIP
supporters. The leadership election was won by the millionaire businessman Michael Holmes, and in the 1999
elections to the European Parliament UKIP gained three seats and 7% of the vote. In that election, Nigel Farage
(South East England), Jeffrey Titford (East of England), and Michael Holmes (South West England) were elected.
Over the following months there was a power struggle between Holmes and the party's National Executive
Committee (NEC). This was partly due to Holmes making a speech perceived as calling for greater powers for the
European Parliament against the European Commission. Ordinary party members forced the resignation of both
Holmes and the entire NEC, and Jeffrey Titford was subsequently elected leader. After Holmes resigned from the
party itself in March 2000, there was a legal battle when he tried to continue as an independent MEP until he
resigned from the European Parliament in December 2002. Holmes was then replaced by Graham Booth, the second
candidate on the UKIP list in South West England.
UKIP put up candidates in more than 420 seats in the 2001 general election, attaining 1.5% of the vote and failing to
win any representation at Westminster. It also failed to break through in the elections to the Scottish Parliament or
the Welsh Assembly, despite those elections being held under proportional representation. In 2002, Titford stood
down as party leader, but continued to sit as a UKIP MEP. He was replaced as leader by Roger Knapman. In 2004
UKIP reorganised itself nationally as a private company limited by guarantee, with the legal name of United
Kingdom Independence Party Limited, though branches remained as unincorporated associations.
UK Independence Party
2004 European elections and 2005 general election
Nigel Farage
In the 2004 European elections UKIP came third with 12 MEPs being elected. In
the London Assembly elections the same year, UKIP won two London Assembly
In late 2004, the mainstream UK press speculated on if or when the UKIP MEP,
former Labour Party MP and chat-show host Robert Kilroy-Silk would take
control of the party. These comments were heightened by Kilroy-Silk's speech at
the UKIP party conference in Bristol on 2 October 2004, in which he called for
the Conservative Party to be "killed off" following the by-election in Hartlepool,
where UKIP finished third (with 10.2%) above the Conservatives in fourth
Interviewed by Channel 4 television, Kilroy-Silk did not deny having ambitions
to lead the party, but stressed that Roger Knapman would lead it into the next
general election.Wikipedia:Citation needed However, the next day, on Breakfast
with Frost, he criticised Knapman's leadership.
After further disagreement with
the leadership, Kilroy-Silk resigned the UKIP whip in the European Parliament on 27 October 2004.
Initially, he
remained a member, while seeking a bid for the party leadership. However, this was not successful and he resigned
completely from UKIP on 20 January 2005, calling it a "joke".
Two weeks later, he founded his own party,
Veritas, taking a number of UKIP members, including both of the London Assembly members, with him.
In the 2005 general election, UKIP fielded 495 candidates and gained 618,000 votes, or 2.3% of the total votes cast
in the election, and did not win a seat in the House of Commons. This result placed it fourth in terms of votes cast
Its best performance was in Boston & Skegness, where Richard Horsnell came third with 9.6% of the
Following the 2005 general election, Kilroy-Silk subsequently resigned from Veritas after its performance in the
election, the party having received only 40,607 votes. In April 2006 David Cameron, during a phone-in on London's
LBC radio station, described UKIP members as being "fruitcakes, loonies and closet racists, mostly."
asked for an apology. but Cameron did not back down.
On 12 September 2006, Farage was elected leader of
UKIP with 45% of the vote, 20% ahead of his nearest rival.
2009 European elections
Main article: European Parliament election, 2009 (United Kingdom)
On 28 March 2009, the Conservative Party's biggest-ever donor, Stuart Wheeler, donated 100,000 to UKIP after
criticising David Cameron's stance towards the Lisbon treaty and the European Union. He said, "If they kick me out
I will understand. I will be very sorry about it, but it won't alter my stance." The following day, 29 March, he was
expelled from the Conservative Party.
The 2009 European elections resulted in UKIP coming second with 16.5% of the vote and 13 MEPs, an increase of
one MEP and 0.3% in the share of the vote compared to the 2004 European Elections.
UK Independence Party
Leadership election, 2009
Main article: United Kingdom Independence Party leadership election, 2009
In September 2009, Nigel Farage announced that he would be resigning as leader of the party in order to stand for
Parliament against the Speaker, John Bercow. The leadership election was contested by five candidates - Malcolm
Pearson, Gerard Batten, Nikki Sinclaire, Mike Nattrass and Alan Wood - and was won by Malcolm Pearson with just
under half of the 9900 votes cast
2010 general election
Main article: United Kingdom Independence Party election results
A UKIP campaign bus
UKIP fielded 572 candidates in the 2010 general election;. Lord
Pearson asked some prospective candidates to stand down in favour of
Eurosceptic Conservative and Labour MPs. However, some refused to
do so.Wikipedia:Citation needed This did not stop Lord Pearson from
campaigning on behalf of the Conservative candidates stating that he
was "putting country before party". These decisions drew some
criticism from within the party from the likes of Michael Heaver of
Young Independence.Wikipedia:Citation needed
On the morning of polling day, Farage was injured when a passenger in
a light aircraft which crashed near Brackley, Northamptonshire.
In the election the party polled 3.1% of the vote (919,471 votes), an increase of 0.9% on the 2005 general election,
but took no seats. This made it the party with the largest percentage of the popular vote to win no seats in the
In Buckingham, the seat of the Speaker John Bercow, Farage obtained 17% of the vote, despite receiving some level
of support from Lord Tebbit, a senior Conservatives figure. Farage came third behind Bercow and John Stevens, the
Buckinghamshire Campaign For Democracy candidate,
a Europhile and former Conservative MEP.
UKIP was
also third in three other constituencies: North Cornwall, North Devon and Torridge and West Devon. Farage's result
was the best of all UKIP candidates that the party put forward in the 2010 general election.
Leadership election, 2010
Main article: United Kingdom Independence Party leadership election, 2010
Lord Pearson resigned as leader in August 2010. The subsequent leadership election was contested between Nigel
Farage, Tim Congdon, David Bannerman and Winston McKenzie and won by Farage with more than 60% of the
vote. During his acceptance speech, Farage spoke out against the leadership of the Conservative Party, and
Conservative policy on Europe. Lord Pearson, the previous leader, welcomed Farage's re-election, and said "The
UKIP crown returns to its rightful owner."
From the 2010 general election to the end of 2012
UKIP contested two by-elections in early 2011, with candidate Jane Collins coming second in Barnsley Central with
12.2% of the vote and Paul Nuttall finishing fourth in Oldham East and Saddleworth with 5.8% of the vote. Farage
welcomed Collins's success and said that UKIP should now aim to replace the Liberal Democrats as the third largest
party, saying "The Lib Dems are no longer the voice of opposition in British politics we are. Between now and the
next general election our aim is to replace them as the third party in British politics."
UKIP fielded 1,217 candidates for the 2011 local council elections, a major increase over its previous
campaigns,Wikipedia:Citation needed but not enough to qualify for a party election broadcast on television. UKIP
UK Independence Party
said that the party was well-organised in the South East, South West and Eastern regions, but there were still places
across the country where there were no UKIP candidates standing at all.
Across the country, many UKIP candidates came second or third. UKIP in Newcastle-under-Lyme gained a total of
five seats on Newcastle Borough Council in 2007 and 2008 and three seats on Staffordshire County Council in 2009.
Although UKIP did not poll well, it made gains across many parts of England, as well as taking control of Ramsey
town council with nine UKIP councillors out of 17. Whilst UKIP made gains and losses, the party fell short of
Farage's predictions of major gains. The UKIP MEP Marta Andreasen called for Farage's resignation as leader of the
In October 2012, David McNarry, a member of the Northern Ireland Assembly who had been elected as an Ulster
Unionist, joined UKIP after being expelled from the Ulster Unionist, becoming UKIPs second representative in
Northern Ireland alongside Henry Reilly, a councillor in Newry and Mourne.
On 29 November 2012, UKIP finished in second place in the 2012 Rotherham by-election, with 4,648 votes (21.7%
of the votes cast). This was the highest percentage share recorded by UKIP in any parliamentary election (although it
had polled a greater number of votes in the 2012 Corby by-election and also in Buckingham in the 2010 general
election, where its candidate was Nigel Farage).
Its candidate, Jane Collins, had previously been the only UKIP
candidate to come second in any UK parliamentary election, at Barnsley Central in 2011. UKIP also came second in
2012 in the Middlesbrough by-election and third in the Croydon North by-election, which were held on the same day
as Rotherham.
During 2012 and early 2013, UKIP's popularity in opinion polls increased, with many polls indicating that it had
overtaken the Liberal Democrats for third place.
2013 to present
Results of the European Parliament election,
2014 by European Parliamentary constituency.
In the Eastleigh by-election on 28 February 2013, the party's candidate
Diane James polled the highest percentage (27.8%) and number of
votes (11,571) ever for a UKIP parliamentary candidate. UKIP came
second, 4.26% (1,771 votes) behind the Liberal Democrats who
retained the seat. The Conservatives were pushed into third place with
a quarter of the vote and the Labour Party into fourth place with less
than 10% of the vote.
In the run-up to the 2013 local elections, UKIP continued to do well in
opinion polls and put up a record number of candidates for the party,
despite a number of controversies over individual candidates in the
weeks before the elections with the BBC reporting that UKIP was
investigating "six candidates over links to the BNP and other far right
groups or alleged racist and homophobic comments, following stories
in national and local newspapers." Since 2008 UKIP has banned
former BNP members from joining UKIP. Several candidates were
suspended from the party for racist views. UKIP accused the Conservative Party's Central Office of trawling through
candidates' online presences to "smear" the party, but acknowledged that it did not have the time or money to vet all
of its candidates.
In the 2013 county council elections across England, the party achieved its best ever local government result, polling
an average of
UK Independence Party
Results of the European Parliament election,
2014 in England. Districts were UKIP received
the largest number of votes are shown in purple.
23% in the wards where it stood, and returning 147 elected councillors.
It made significant gains in Norfolk, Lincolnshire and Kent, taking 15,
16 and 17 seats respectively. It was described as the best result for a
party outside the big three in British politics since the Second World
War. A Guardian/ICM poll in the week after these elections placed
UKIP third in national polls, with nationwide support of 18%.
However, analysis suggests that in one considered
scenarioWikipedia:Please clarify this level of support would not be
enough to win any seats at the next general election, and UKIP "face
an uphill struggle to secure more than a handful of MPs". By 11 June
2013 UKIP had dropped 6 points in the Guardian/ICM poll, to join the
Liberal Democrats on 12%. However by 16 June Comres had UKIP
support at 19% and Observer/Opinium at 20%.
Though winning councillors and gaining impressive vote shares in
by-elections in England, UKIP has not been able to make any similar
advance in Scotland, a trend that was confirmed in the Aberdeen
Donside by-election on 20 June 2013, when the UKIP candidate came
5th, losing his deposit with 4.8% of the vote.
During the party's conference in 2013 the whip was suspended from Godfrey Bloom, after he was reported to have
made sexist comments.
According to Farage, on 24 January 2014, the UKIP general election manifesto in 2010 was "drivel" and "nonsense".
He said he had never read it (despite having written the foreword and having helped to launch it). He said that the
manifesto was written by UKIP's then policy chief, David Campbell Bannerman, and that "the idiot that wrote it has
now left us and joined the Conservatives". The party is working on new policies which will be unveiled by the end of
2014, he said.
Farage pledged in January 2014 that he would end the selection of so-called 'Walter Mitty' candidates who bring the
party into disrepute.
This was interpreted as a rejection of comments made by David Silvester, a former
Conservative Party councillor and a (now former) UKIP councillor in Henley-on Thames,
who had made
comments blaming recent floods in Britain on prime minister David Cameron because he had been responsible for
the introduction of same-sex marriage.
In March 2014, Ofcom awarded UKIP "major party status" for the 2014 European Elections, but only in England and
Wales and not on a permanent basis.
This will give UKIP the same number of party election broadcasts as the
three larger parties as well as having its views given "due weight" in broadcast news on ITV and Channel 5. A BBC
source indicated that it will also do this.
In local elections in 2014, UKIP won 163 seats, an increase of 128, but did not take control of any council.
2014 European elections
Main article: European Parliament election, 2014 (United Kingdom)
UKIP received the greatest number of votes (27.49%) of any British party in the 2014 European Parliament election
and gained 11 extra MEPs for a total of 24. The party won seats in every region of Great Britain, including its first in
Scotland, which Farage called a "breakthrough". It was the first time in over a century that a party other than Labour
or Conservatives won the most votes in a UK-wide election. Farage said the result would change British politics
fundamentally. "The political establishment will be terrified by this. They will all have to do a very large amount of
soul searching and realize that the usual platitude 'We're listening' isn't enough," he said.
UK Independence Party
UKIP office in Tunbridge Wells
UKIP's organisation is divided into twelve regions. It also has a branch
in Gibraltar.
UKIP Scotland
UKIP in Scotland was led by Lord (Christopher) Monckton of
Brenchley and chaired by Mike Scott-Hayward until late 2013, when
the Scottish administration was dissolved and the Scottish section of
the party "wiped out" following what has been described in the press as
a "civil war" between the Scottish leadership and challengers favoured
by Farage. The dispute concerned the selection of candidates for the
European Parliament election in 2014; seven of the nine shortlisted candidates resigned their candidacy immediately
before Scottish members were balloted to pick the final six, in protest at what they saw as an unfair balloting
process. The ballot was delayed but eventually went ahead with fresh candidates and on 25 February 2014 at
Glasgow's Grand Central Hotel, UKIP Scotland announced its full list of candidates for the election.
Commentators have observed that "Ukip in Scotland has failed to replicate the party's success south of the Border".
In the 2010 UK general election UKIP Scotland's candidate Robert Smith saved his deposit in the seat of Orkney and
Shetland, winning 6.3% of the vote. In 2013 UKIP candidates came fifth narrowly losing their deposit in the
Aberdeen Donside by-election and also fifth in the Dunfermline by-election. However, at the start of 2014 in the
Cowdenbeath by-election for the Scottish Parliament, UKIP came 4th, outpolling the Scottish Liberal Democrats for
the first time.
When Nigel Farage visited Scotland during a by-election campaign in May 2013, protesters from the Radical
Independence Campaign interrupted his press conference in the Canon's Gait pub on Edinburgh's Royal Mile and
forced him to be taken away in an armoured police van. Protesters have similarly protested Farage's appearance on a
Question Time episode hosted in Scotland.
Citing its consistently low poll numbers in Scotland compared with England, UKIP has been dismissed as
"irrelevant" in Scotland by First Minster Alex Salmond, among others. They claim that such a divergence may be a
significant factor in the independence referendum in September 2014. Various commentators argue that a strong
result for UKIP in England in the 2014 European parliamentary elections, coupled with a poor result in Scotland,
may help push Scottish voters towards supporting independence.
During the elections, however, UKIP achieved
more than 10% of the vote in Scotland, winning its first Scottish MEP, David Coburn.
UKIP Northern Ireland
UKIP's membership in Northern Ireland was 247 in June 2013. The party's first representative to be elected under the
UKIP label in Northern Ireland, the Kilkeel councillor Henry Reilly, is the party's Northern Ireland chairman. Alan
Love is its vice-chairman, Barbara Trotter is secretary and Alan Lewis is treasurer. UKIP has one Member of the
Northern Ireland Assembly, namely David McNarry, formerly chief whip for the Ulster Unionist Party, who joined
UKIP in 2012. The party is registered as unionist in the Northern Ireland Assembly. Paul Nuttall, MEP for North
West England and UKIP's deputy leader, has called for a UKIP-Traditional Unionist Voice electoral pact for the
2014 European Parliament election. At the 2014 local elections the party gained two seats, increasing its number of
councillors to three.
UK Independence Party
UKIP Gibraltar
UKIP Gibraltar operates as a branch of UKIP in the British Overseas Territory of Gibraltar. It held its first public
meeting at the "Lord Nelson" on 25 April 2013.
UKIP leader Nigel Farage has said that Gibraltar, along with all
other British Overseas Territories, should have representatives in the House of Commons of the United Kingdom,
similar to the privileges given to French overseas territories in France. Farage believes that all citizens for whom the
British Parliament passes legislation, whether in the United Kingdom or its territories, deserve democratic
representation in that Parliament.
A UKIP marquee at the Croydon Summer
Festival, 2007
Although UKIP's original raison d'tre was withdrawal from the
European Union, it was felt that the public perception of the party as a
single-issue party despite issuing full manifestos was damaging
electoral progress. Farage, on becoming leader, started a wide-ranging
policy review, his stated aim being "the development of the party into
broadly standing for traditional conservative and libertarian values".
Taxation and economy
UKIP proposes cuts in corporation taxes and the abolition of
inheritance taxes. The abolition of national insurance is advocated by
UKIP, which it says will simplify the tax system. UKIP proposes "tens
of billions" of cuts to taxation, along with a further 77bn of cuts to the public sector in order to reduce the deficit.
The economic plans outlined by UKIP have been called into question by The Times, who have highlighted a 120
billion black hole in their spending plans.
According to the party website, UKIP proposes directing the majority of health care spending to elected County
Health Boards, making spending decisions directly accountable to the public locally;
as well as dramatically
cutting the Department of Health and bringing in professional procurement skills to reduce what UKIP says are the
huge amounts of money wasted in procurement and resource allocation. In addition, UKIP proposes introducing a
voucher system that will enable people to receive treatment outside of the NHS, replace non-clinical managers with
matrons to run NHS hospitals and introduce free dental and eye checks.
European Union
A UKIP candidate campaigning in the run-up to
the 2010 general election
UKIP advocates leaving the European Union, resulting in stopping
payments to the EU and withdrawal from EU treaties, while
maintaining trading ties with other European countries. Nigel Farage
says Britain can get a "simple free trade agreement", and says that
Britain can negotiate its own free trade agreements around the world
without participation in EU trade agreements. For example, UKIP
suggests that Britain can create a Commonwealth Free Trade Area.
In its 2010 general election manifesto, UKIP stated that leaving the EU
would allow Britain to "regain three essential Freedoms" and stated a
UK Independence Party
belief in civic nationalism, which it says "is open and inclusive to anyone who wishes to identify with Britain,
regardless of ethnic or religious background" while contrasting that with what it described as the "blood and soil"
nationalism of extremist parties.
European Court of Human Rights of the Council of Europe
UKIP wants to repeal the Human Rights Act, and remove Britain from both the European Convention on Refugees
and the European Convention on Human Rights to "enable us to deport foreign criminal and terrorist suspects where
desirable" while still "allow[ing] genuine asylum applications in accordance with our international obligations".
UKIP fully supports the British Monarchy and its Constitutional role. In 2012, it opposed disestablishment of the
Church of England and said it would consider a transfer of part of the Crown Estates back to the Monarchy, in
exchange for an end to annual State support.
UKIP hoarding in Exeter, 2009. Featuring Sir
Winston Churchill, it reads "Say no to unlimited
immigration. Take back control of our borders"
UKIP's policies on immigration are currently under review after
receiving criticism for not having "clear-cut" immigration policies. The
party has previously outlined a number of measures designed to reduce
immigration into the UK which include a five-year "freeze" on
immigration for permanent settlement, the introduction of a
points-based work-permit system and initiating a drive to remove
illegal immigrants. In addition, UKIP proposes to allow EU citizens
who have been domiciled in the UK for seven years to apply for
citizenship. Since EU immigrants are overwhelmingly white and
non-EU immigrants are overwhelmingly non-white, UKIPs
immigration policy would mean a higher proportion of immigrants to
Britain are ethnic minorities. This opposition to freedom of movement
is, according to UKIP, to end discrimination on the basis of EU citizenship in favour of a purely skill based
immigration policy.
On 29 December 2013, Nigel Farage told the BBC that the UK should allow Syrian refugees to enter the UK, while
continuing to limit "economic migration". The next day he clarified his position, suggesting that Britain should allow
refuge to the persecuted Christian minority in Syria. His views were rejected by the government.
Same-sex marriage
In November 2012, David Coburn of UKIP's National Executive Committee stated the party's policy on same-sex
marriage: the party supports civil partnerships but opposes legalisation allowing same-sex marriage because of
concerns that a law change could mean that faith groups and places of worship would be forced to perform same-sex
marriages. In March 2014, an answer submitted to Pink News by the UKIP press office had Farage saying UKIP
would not overturn same-sex marriages if elected. Farage said that answer had not been approved by him, and was a
"draft by a staff member that should never have been sent out".
UK Independence Party
Energy, environment and climate change
UKIP are sceptical of man-made climate change and oppose the creation of wind farms and investment in other
renewable energy sources. In 2010, UKIP stated that they would seek to have a Royal Commission investigate
whether or not climate change is man-made, to scrap wind farm subsidies, ban the showing of the global warming
film An Inconvenient Truth in schools, and ban use of public money by local authorities on climate change-related
efforts. UKIP's 2013 energy policy document states that global warming is part of a natural cycle: "the slight
warming in the last hundred years is entirely consistent with well-established, long-term natural climate cycles".
On Any Questions, Nigel Farage described plans to increase the use of wind energy as "loopy" and said it would lead
to Britain being covered "in ugly disgusting ghastly windmills" that would not satisfactorily provide for Britain's
energy needs.
Then UKIP spokesman Christopher Monckton said that the intention of a proposed United Nations climate treaty
was to "impose a communist world government", and stated that UKIP was the only option for those who disbelieve
in climate change as "all the major parties have decided to sign up to the eco-fascist agenda".
In its 2010 manifesto UKIP proposed a 40 percent increase in defence spending and the purchase of three new
aircraft carriers. In January 2014 party leader Farage said that all the party's policies were under review and he would
not commit to new ones until after the European elections in May. The party has also pledged to streamline the
Ministry of Defence and to oppose foreign military intervention and military aid.
Party leaders
Leader Portrait Tenure Related notes
Alan Sked 19931997
Craig Mackinlay 1997 Acting leader
Michael Holmes, MEP 19972000 MEP from 19992004
Jeffrey Titford, MEP 20002002 MEP from 19992009
Roger Knapman, MEP 20022006 MEP from 20042009
Nigel Farage, MEP 20062009 MEP from 1999
Lord Pearson of Rannoch 20092010
Jeffrey Titford 2010 Acting leader
UK Independence Party
Nigel Farage, MEP 2010present
Main article: UK Independence Party representation and election results
House of Commons
UKIP has never had an MP elected to the House of Commons, although the party briefly had representation when Dr
Bob Spink, the MP for Castle Point, defected from the Conservative Party to UKIP on 21 April 2008, before leaving
UKIP in November 2008 following disagreements with the party on several issues.
House of Lords
On 24 June 1995, UKIP gained its first member of the House of Lords, Lord Grantley, who had joined the party in
1993 from the Conservatives and had recently succeeded to his father's titles. However, with the coming House of
Lords Act 1999, he decided not to stand for election as a continuing member, and so left the House in November
1999. Earlier in 1999, UKIP had gained a second peer in the House of Lords, Richard Thomas Orlando Bridgeman,
7th Earl of Bradford, but he too left the House in November 1999 because of the House of Lords Act. The Lord
Pearson of Rannoch and Lord Willoughby de Broke both defected to UKIP on 7 January 2007, giving the party its
first representation in the House of Lords since the departure of Lord Grantley and the Earl of Bradford. The Lord
Pearson of Rannoch went on to serve as party leader from November 2009 to September 2010. On 18 September
2012, The Lord Stevens of Ludgate joined UKIP, having sat as an Independent Conservative since his expulsion
from the Conservatives in 2004.
Devolved Seats
London Assembly
Scottish Parliament
Welsh Assembly
Northern Ireland Assembly
Northern Ireland Assembly
On 4 October 2012, UKIP, gained its first representation in the Northern Ireland Assembly in David McNarry, MLA
for Strangford, who had been sitting as an independent, following his expulsion from the Ulster Unionist Party.
Welsh Assembly and Scottish Parliament
UKIP do not currently have any representatives in the other devolved nations of Scotland or Wales. UKIP fielded
candidates at the Scottish Parliament election on 5 May 2011, when its platform included a commitment to keep the
Scottish Parliament in Edinburgh, while replacing the separately-elected Members of the Scottish Parliament with
the Members of the House of Commons elected in Scotland. The party also fielded candidates for the Welsh
UK Independence Party
European Parliament
In 1999, three UKIP members were elected to the European Parliament. Together with Eurosceptics from other
countries, they formed a grouping called Europe of Democracies and Diversities (EDD).
In 2004, 37 MEPs from the UK, Poland, Denmark and Sweden founded a new European Parliamentary group called
Independence and Democracy (ID) from the old EDD group. However, following the European Parliament election,
2009, when Eurosceptic parties from Denmark, Sweden and elsewhere lost all representation, the ID group was
UKIP has since formed a new right-wing grouping called Europe of Freedom and Democracy (EFD) comprising
nationalist, Eurosceptic, conservative and other political factions. This group is more right-wing than the older
Independence and Democracy grouping.
Current members of the European Parliament
UKIP has 24 members in the European Parliament.
Constituency MEP(s)
East Midlands Roger Helmer, Margot Parker
East of England Patrick O'Flynn, Stuart Agnew, Tim Aker
London Gerard Batten
North East Jonathan Arnott
North West England Paul Nuttall, Louise Bours, Steven Woolfe
Scotland David Coburn
South East England Nigel Farage, Janice Atkinson, Diane James, Ray Finch
South West England William Dartmouth, Julia Reid
Wales Nathan Gill
West Midlands Jill Seymour, James Carver, Bill Etheridge
Yorkshire and the Humber Jane Collins, Amjad Bashir, Mike Hookem
Local government
The first UKIP local council election win occurred when one of their members was elected to South Cambridgeshire
District Council in 2000. A number of Conservative, Liberal Democrat, Labour and Independent local councillors in
all four constituent nations of the UK have defected to UKIP over subsequent years, with the most recent defections
to date (May to July 2013) coming from former Conservative councillors in the London Boroughs of Merton,
Richmond upon Thames and Havering, and from Labour in Northampton and North-East Lincolnshire. In the May
2012 local elections, UKIP won a total of 7 seats in England out of 2,414 (no change on the previous year), 2 seats in
Wales out of 1,223 (up 1) and no seats in Scotland out of 1,220 (down 1). It failed to win any seats in the London
Assembly, coming fifth overall with 4.5% of the vote. In November that year, it failed to win any contests in the
England and Wales Police and Crime Commissioner elections. In May 2013, 33 English and one Welsh council held
local elections, with UKIP gaining 139 seats for a total of 147, with significant gains in Lincolnshire, Norfolk and
On 6 May 2011, the party won nine of the seventeen seats for Ramsey Town Council in Huntingdon,
Cambridgeshire. Before the election, the party had only one seat in the town council. On 12 May, UKIP councillor
Lisa Duffy was elected as Mayor. The UKIP group leader for Huntingdonshire District Council said that the town
UK Independence Party
council under UKIP would "be standing up for volunteers and the third sector and will be making grants to them to
help the big society develop." The Daily Mail said that UKIP "has made political history after taking control of its
first council in the UK".Wikipedia:Manual of Style/Dates and numbers#Precise language
Defections and removals
Former television host Robert Kilroy-Silk who was elected as a UKIP MEP for the East Midlands in 2004 quit UKIP
in 2005 he said he was ashamed to have joined the party, which he labelled as a "joke". Kilroy-Silk also said "I'm
embarrassed with its allies in Europe,". At the time, the then UKIP leader Roger Knapman said he would "break
open the champagne", adding: "It was nice knowing him, now 'goodbye'." Kilroy-Silk would later go on to form
David Campbell Bannerman defected from UKIP to the Tories on 24 May 2011. 'He said he had been "impressed"
by David Cameron's leadership while UKIP was beset by "internal fighting" and was not a "credible" political force.'
On 12 October 2011, Roger Helmer announced that he would resign from the European Parliament at the end of the
year, citing "increasing disillusion with the attitudes of the Conservative Party" as the main reason, although
admitting that his "twelve-and-a-half years banging my head against the same brick wall in Brussels is perhaps long
enough". It was announced on 2 March 2012 that he had defected from the Conservatives to the United Kingdom
Independence Party.
Marta Andreasen defected from UKIP to the Conservative Party in February 2013, describing leader Nigel Farage as
"a Stalinist" who was "anti-women". Previously Andreasen has called for current UKIP leader Nigel Farage to resign
over poor local election results in May 2011.
In March 2010, the UKIP MEP Nikki Sinclaire was expelled from UKIP after resigning from the EFD grouping,
citing her displeasure at what she perceived to be racist and extremist parties that belong to the EFD Group. Sinclaire
also cited the deterioration of her relationship with Farage, the co-leader of the EFD group. Sinclaire was
subsequently expelled from UKIP for refusing to be part of the EFD group. She later won a sex discrimination claim
against her former colleagues, to which UKIP did not lodge a defence, and the ruling went against the party by
Mike Nattrass failed a candidate assessment test in August 2013 and was deselected by the party for the 2014
European election.
He took the party to court over the decision, but lost. In September 2013 Nattrass resigned
from UKIP, becoming an Independent MEP in the process. Natrass described Farage's leadership of the party as
"totalitarian", following his earlier deselection.
He was the fourth UKIP MEP elected in 2009 to leave the party.
Godfrey Bloom whilst sitting as a UKIP MEP, and a senior party member made statements that have been described
as "sexist". A few weeks after being appointed to the European Parliament's Committee on Women's Rights and
Gender Equality on 20 July 2004, Bloom told an interviewer that, "no self-respecting small businessman with a brain
in the right place would ever employ a lady of child-bearing age." After inviting students from the University of
Cambridge Women's Rugby Club to Brussels in 2004, Bloom was accused of sexual assault, making "sexist and
misogynistic remarks" and using offensive language during a dinner party. Bloom, who sponsored the club with
3,000 a year, admitted making misogynist comments but denied sexual harassment. On 20 September 2013, UKIP
withdrew the party whip from Bloom after he assaulted journalist Michael Crick in the street, threatened a second
reporter, and at the party's conference jokingly referred to his female audience as sluts.
Bloom sits as an
independent MEP, but remains a member of UKIP.
UK Independence Party
Election results
House of Commons
House of Commons of the United Kingdom
Election year # of total votes % of overall vote # of seats won
1997 105,722 0.3% 0
2001 390,563 1.5% 0
2005 603,298 2.2% 0
2010 919,546 3.1% 0
European Parliament
European Parliament
Election year # of total votes % of overall vote # of seats won Rank
1994 155,487 1% 0 8
1999 696,057 6.7% 3 4
2004 2,650,768 16.1% 12 3
2009 2,498,226 16.6% 13 2
2014 4,376,635 27.5% 24 1
Voter base
In 2011, the British academics Matthew Goodwin, Robert Ford and David Cutts published a study that identified
Euroscepticism as the main causal factor for voters supporting UKIP, with concern over immigration levels and
distrust of the political establishment also featuring as important motives. The average UKIP voter was 55 years old,
which is older than for other parties. There was no correlation between social class and likelihood of voting UKIP,
although UKIP voters tended to feel more financially insecure than the average voter. The skilled working class were
found to be slightly overrepresented amongst UKIP voters, and there was a higher likelihood that a UKIP voter had
grown up in a Conservative-supporting household compared to the average voter.
In the same year, a study by Richard Whitaker and Philip Lynch of the University of Leicester based on polling data
from YouGov concluded that "the balance of attitudinal explanations of UKIP support makes its voters distinct from
those voting for far right parties". The authors found that voter support for UKIP correlated with concerns about the
value of immigration, hostility to immigrants and a lack of trust in the political system but the biggest explanatory
factor for their support of UKIP was Euroscepticism. A further study by the same authors suggests that UKIP voters'
core beliefs align very closely to those of the UKIP candidates; particularly so on issues surrounding European
integration, which has resulted in Conservative voters switching to UKIP due to divisions within the Conservatives
over this issue.
In May 2013, Stephan Shakespeare, the CEO of YouGov, analysed the reasons for the strong support and
performance of UKIP in the 2013 local elections. He observed that voter research showed UKIP had "very loyal"
followers, with a high proportion of ex-Conservative voters, and that the primary reason for support was a sense by
voters that UKIP "seemed to be on the same wavelength" as the population, was perceived as "genuine" and "simply
different", and by tapping into the "anti-politics mood" became contrasted strongly with "the others [who] haven't
UK Independence Party
got a clue about the real world". He concluded that "you just don't get this [perception] with other party leaders, not
even from their supporters". Noting also that 23% of voters reported giving "serious consideration" to voting UKIP,
and that non-UKIP voters were "only half as likely to mention immigration or Europe" as existing UKIP voters, he
also concluded that these potential voters were "best won" by providing a "broad agenda".
Lord Glasman, an adviser to Labour leader Ed Miliband, said that in his opinion Labour voters who defected to
UKIP may never return because the party is failing to address concerns on welfare and immigration.
UKIP's membership numbers increased from 2002 to the time of the 2004 European Parliament election, before
hovering around the 16,000 mark during the late 2000s.
By July 2013, the figure grew to 30,000
before ending
the year at 32,500.
In April 2014, the number was 36,000, by 7 May reached 37,000 and on 19 May, less than a
fortnight later and only three days before the 2014 European Parliament election, stood at over 38,000.
Parties created by former UKIP members
Veritas - Latin for "truth" - which has been described as a breakaway party from UKIP, was founded at a press
conference on 2 February 2005, during which Kilroy-Silk proclaimed "unlike the old parties, we shall be honest,
open and straight", devoid of the other parties' "lies and spin". There were a number of defections from UKIP to the
party including the UKIP London Assembly member Damian Hockney, who became deputy leader. (Damian
Hockney and Peter Hulme-Cross had been elected to the London Assembly in June 2004 as UKIP representatives,
then switched to Veritas).
An Independence from Europe
An Independence from Europe was set up by the former UKIP MEP Mike Nattrass on 11 November 2013. Nattrass
has said that the celebrity chef Rustie Lee, and a former Welsh minister are amongst his supporters. The party will
stand in several constituencies at the 2014 European Parliament elections. An Independence from Europe, which is
using the tagline "UK Independence Now" has drawn complaints from UKIP due to the similarity of the name and
the party's description. Five former UKIP councillors on Lincolnshire County Council have also joined the party.
We Demand a Referendum
We Demand a Referendum is a British political party launched by the former UKIP MEP Nikki Sinclaire in June
New Deal
New Deal, a party, which has been described as "a new left-of-centre antiEU party which hopes to challenge
Labour" was founded in September 2013 by UKIP's founder Alan Sked.
One London
After the failure of Veritas, Damian Hockney and Peter Hulme formed One London on 1 September 2005. One
London was registered as a party in November 2005 and was de-registered in November 2008.
British Freedom Party and Liberty GB
Former UKIP candidate Paul Weston founded the defunct British Freedom Party and later Liberty GB, having left
the party mainly due to what he described as its failure to address issues around Islam in Britain.
UK Independence Party
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Owen Jones: Chavs: The Demonization of the Working Class, p 245, Verso 2011
David Art, Inside the Radical Right, p 188, Cambridge University Press, 2011
Stephen Driver. Understanding British Party Politics, p 151, Polity Press 2011
Daniel Trilling, Bloody Nasty People: The Rise of Britain's Far Right, p 154, Verso 2012
[2] Ford, Robert and Goodwin, Matthew. What's the difference between BNP and Ukip voters? (http:/ / www. theguardian. com/ commentisfree/
2014/ apr/ 14/ bnp-ukip-voters-politics-immigration). The Guardian. 14 April 2014. Retrieved 6 June 2014.
[3] http:/ / www. ukip. org/
[4] Sam McBirde, "McNarry set to join UKIP" (https:/ / web. archive. org/ web/ 20121008031731/ http:/ / www. newsletter. co. uk/ news/ local/
mcnarry-set-to-join-ukip-1-4333665), Belfast Newsletter, 4 October 2012 (Archived at the Internet Archive)
[5] 'FARAGE, Nigel Paul', Who's Who 2013, A & C Black, 2013; online edn, Oxford University Press, Dec 2012; (http:/ / www. ukwhoswho.
com/ view/ article/ oupww/ whoswho/ U15437) online edition, November 2012. Retrieved 10 September 2013.
[6] "Kilroy-Silk wants UKIP leadership" (http:/ / www.telegraph. co. uk/ news/ 1473236/ Kilroy-Silk-wants-UKIP-leadership. html), Daily
Telegraph, 3 October 2004
[7] "Kilroy quits UKIP group of MEPs" (http:/ / co. uk/ 2/ hi/ uk_news/ politics/ 3958273. stm), BBC News, 27 October 2004
Matthew Tempest, "Kilroy resigns Ukip whip" (http:/ / www. theguardian. com/ politics/ 2004/ oct/ 27/ otherparties. uk) Guardian online, 27
October 2004
[8] "Kilroy-Silk quits 'shameful' UKIP" (http:/ / uk/ 2/ hi/ uk_news/ politics/ 4189537. stm), BBC News, 21 January 2005
[9] Martin Hoscik, "UKIP on the London Assembly? What Farage and the Politics Show didnt say" (http:/ / www. mayorwatch. co. uk/
ukip-on-the-london-assembly-what-farage-and-the-politics-show-didnt-say/ 201115092), MayorWatch, 23 March 2011
[10] The Electoral Commission, Election 2005: constituencies, candidates and results (http:/ / web. archive. org/ web/ 20081209144147/ http:/ /
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[11] "UKIP demands apology from Cameron" (http:/ / news. bbc. co. uk/ 1/ hi/ 4875026. stm), BBC News, 4 April 2006
[12] Ros Taylor "Cameron refuses to apologise to Ukip" (http:/ / www. theguardian. com/ politics/ 2006/ apr/ 04/ conservatives. uk),, 4 April 2006
[13] Electoral Commission, 2010 UK general election results: Buckingham (http:/ / www. electoralcommission. org. uk/
find-information-by-subject/ elections-and-referendums/ past-elections-and-referendums/ uk-general-elections/
2010-uk-general-election-results/ buckingham?undefined=http:/ / www. electoralcommission. org. uk/ find-information-by-subject/
elections-and-referendums/ past-elections-and-referendums/ uk-general-elections/ 2010-uk-general-election-results/ buckingham)
[14] Emily Andres & Andy Dolan, "Speaker John Bercow holds off challenge from UKIP's Nigel Farage who remains in hospital after election
day plane crash" (http:/ / www. news/ election/ article-1274738/
UK-ELECTION-RESULTS-2010-Speaker-John-Bercow-beats-Nigel-Farage-Buckingham. html#ixzz2gYM3L5AR), Daily Mail, 7 May 2010
[15] (http:/ / www.aylesburyvaledc. gov. uk/ news/ 2010/ apr/
candidates-uk-parliamentary-election-aylesbury-buckingham-constituencies/ ) Aylesbury Vale District Council
[16] See Opinion polling for the next United Kingdom general election for detail, including a list of every opinion poll carried out in 2012.
[17] Twitter / tobyhelm: Labour 36 (-1), Tories 27(+1) (https:/ / twitter. com/ tobyhelm/ status/ 345942932743938049). Retrieved
on 17 July 2013.
[18] SNP's Mark McDonald wins Aberdeen Donside by-election (http:/ / www. bbc. co. uk/ news/
uk-scotland-north-east-orkney-shetland-22986202), accessed 21 June 2013
[19] Rowena Mason, "Ukip's Godfrey Bloom has whip removed after 'sluts' remark" (http:/ / www. theguardian. com/ politics/ 2013/ sep/ 20/
nigel-farage-godfrey-bloom-sluts-ukip), The Guardian, 20 September 2013. Accessed 28 January 2018.
[20] "Nigel Farage: 2010 UKIP manifesto was 'drivel'" (http:/ / www. bbc. co. uk/ news/ uk-politics-25879302), BBC News, 24 January 2014
- Rowena Mason, "Nigel Farage wrote foreword to Ukip's 'drivel' manifesto and helped launch it" (http:/ / www. theguardian. com/ politics/
2014/ jan/ 24/ nigel-farage-wrote-foreward-ukip-drivel-manifesto), The Guardian, 24 January 2014
[21] Kunal Dutta "Nigel Farage vows to crack down on Ukip's 'Walter Mitty' candidates following embarrassment of David Silvester gay
marriage flooding comments" (http:/ / www.independent. co. uk/ news/ uk/ politics/
nigel-farage-vows-to-crack-down-on-ukips-walter-mitty-candidates-following-embarrassment-of-david-silvester-comments-9089306. html),
The Independent, 28 January 2014
[22] Patrick Wintour "Ukip suspends councillor who claimed floods were caused by gay marriage" (http:/ / www. theguardian. com/ society/
2014/ jan/ 19/ ukip-councillor-gay-people-spiritual-disease-pray-healed-david-silvester), The Guardian, 19 January 2014
[23] Miranda Prynne "No more 'Walter Mittys' allowed in UKIP, says Nigel Farage" (http:/ / www. telegraph. co. uk/ news/ politics/ ukip/
10601175/ No-more-Walter-Mittys-allowed-in-UKIP-says-Nigel-Farage. html),, 28 January 2014
[24] Ofcom list of major parties (http:/ / stakeholders.ofcom. org. uk/ binaries/ broadcast/ guidance/ major-parties-mar14. pdf), Ofcom, 3 March
[25] Glenn Gottfried, "Election success for Ukip in England could encourage Scottish independence" (http:/ / www. newstatesman. com/ politics/
2014/ 04/ election-success-ukip-england-could-encourage-scottish-independence)'New Statesman, 29 April 2014
UK Independence Party
- Ailsa Henderson, "Why Ukip matters in the Scottish independence referendum" (http:/ / blogs. spectator. co. uk/ coffeehouse/ 2014/ 04/
why-ukip-matters-in-the-scottish-independence-referendum/ ), The Spectator, 29 April 2014
[26] Northern Ireland council results (http:/ / com/ news/ events/ vote2014/ ni-council-election-results), BBC News, accessed 25 May
[27] "UKIP launch on The Rock" (http:/ / www. theolivepress. es/ spain-news/ 2013/ 04/ 30/ ukip-launch-on-the-rock/ ). The Olive Press, 30
April 2013
[28] James Chapman, "Give Falklands and Gibraltar their own MP, says Farage: UKIP leader says territories' voices are dangerously 'muted'"
(http:/ / www. dailymail. co. uk/ news/ article-2328746/
Give-Falklands-Gibraltar-MP-says-Nigel-Farage-UKIP-leader-says-territories-voices-dangerously-muted. html), Mail Online, 21 May 2013.
[29] Will Woodward, "UKIP trebles candidates for local elections" (http:/ / www. guardian. co. uk/ politics/ 2007/ apr/ 11/ uk. localgovernment),
The Guardian, 11 April 2007
[30] Health (http:/ / www. ukip. org/ index.php/ issues/ policy-pages/ health). UK Independence Party. Retrieved: 24 May 2013.
[31] [31] (Archived at the Wayback Machine - no longer part of the party's site at the original URL)
[32] Nicholas Watt, "Ukip's Nigel Farage shocks own party with call to let in Syrian refugees" (http:/ / www. theguardian. com/ politics/ 2013/
dec/ 29/ nigel-farage-ukip-syria-refugees), The Guardian, 29 December
[33] Joseph Patrick McCormick, "Nigel Farage appears to U-turn again on same-sex marriage" (http:/ / www. pinknews. co. uk/ 2014/ 03/ 19/
nigel-farage-appears-to-u-turn-again-on-same-sex-marriage/ ), Pink News, 18 March 2014
[34] "McNarry explains UKIP move" (http:/ / www.newsletter. co. uk/ news/ regional/ mcnarry-explains-ukip-move-1-4339912), Belfast
Newsletter, 5 October 2012
[35] Mike Nattrass, "West Midlands MEP 'failed' selection for UKIP" (http:/ / m. bbc. co. uk/ news/ uk-england-birmingham-23852962), BBC
News, (27 August 2013). Retrieved on 7 September 2013.
[36] "Ukip a 'totalitarian party,' says resigning MEP" (http:/ / www. channel4. com/ news/
ukip-mep-west-midlands-nigel-farage-mike-nattrass-resigns), Channel 4 News, 12 September 2013
[37] "Godfrey Bloom: UKIP MEP Calls Women 'Sluts'" (http:/ / news. sky. com/ story/ 1144453/ godfrey-bloom-ukip-mep-calls-women-sluts),
Sky News, 20 September 2013
[38] "Bloom quits as UKIP MEP after 'sluts' joke row" (https:/ / www. bbc. co. uk/ news/ uk-politics-24222992), BBC News, 24 September 2013
[39] Matthew Holehouse "Labour's working class support 'died'" (http:/ / www. telegraph. co. uk/ news/ politics/ labour/ 10792422/
Labours-working-class-support-died. html), Daily Telegraph, 28 April 2014
[40] Feargal McGuinness, Membership of UK political parties (http:/ / www. parliament. uk/ briefing-papers/ SN05125. pdf), House of
Commons Library, 2012
[41] George Eaton, "UKIP membership hits 30,000. Could it overtake the Lib Dems next?" (http:/ / www. newstatesman. com/ politics/ 2013/ 07/
ukip-membership-hits-30000-could-it-overtake-lib-dems-next), New Statesman, 12 July 2013
[42] "UKIP says it has signed up 13,000 new members in 2013" (http:/ / www. bbc. co. uk/ news/ uk-politics-25562198), BBC News, 31
December 2013
[43] http:/ / www.lincolnshire. gov. uk/ local-democracy/ about-your-county-councillor/
[44] Shiv Malik, "Ukip founder creates new leftwing anti-EU party" (http:/ / www. theguardian. com/ politics/ 2013/ sep/ 08/
ukip-founder-new-leftwing-anti-eu-party), The Guardian, 8 September 2013
Further reading
Wheatcroft, Geoffrey (14 May 2014). "A Spot of Tea Party? Nigel Farage and his U.K. Independence Party Want
Out of Europe" (http:/ / www. nytimes. com/ 2014/ 05/ 18/ magazine/
nigel-farage-and-his-uk-independence-party-want-out-of-europe. html). The New York Times Magazine.
External links
Official website (http:/ / www. ukip. org)
UKIP in the European Parliament UKIP MEPs' website (http:/ / www. ukipmeps. org)
Article Sources and Contributors
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