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Update: Conflicting theories from Haverhill councillors about UKIP’s success in the town

PUBLISHED: 13:25 10 January 2014 | UPDATED: 20:37 10 January 2014

UKIP councillor Tony Brown

UKIP councillor Tony Brown

Archant

The UK Independence Party consolidated its position in its Suffolk stronghold with resounding victories in by-elections for a town and district council.

UKIP candidates Tony Brown and Paul Firman won more votes than the other candidates combined in winning election to Haverhill East ward of St Edmundsbury Borough Council and Haverhill Town Council, in elections that were held simultaneously on Thursday.

Haverhill already had UKIP representation on the town, district and county council.

Mr Brown, already one of two UKIP county councillors for Haverhill, attributed the party’s success to years of neglect from Suffolk County and St Edmundsbury Borough councils.

“Basically we’ve proved that we work well on the local issues,” said Mr Brown, who cited poor transport links and repeated withdrawals of grant funding as major concerns for residents.

“We’ll soon be a town of 35,000 people, and we’ve only got one piece of road that’s a dual carriageway that goes anywhere.

“The borough and the county doesn’t address their concerns. That’s why they’ve come behind us, because they’re looking for an alternative.

“We’re not a small little town of 10,000 people any more. Haverhill is much more than just a poor second cousin of Bury St Edmunds.”

However, Conservative Anne Gower, who is Haverhill’s only non-UKIP county councillor and sits on the borough council, rejected Mr Brown’s claims.

She said: “I’ve fought Haverhill’s corner at every opportunity since I was elected. I’ve worked extremely hard on getting things for the town.

“A lot of national issues that are concerning people - green issues, immigration - these are all big, headline issues, and I think people are voting to say that actually, in government, we’re not very happy with what you’re saying.

“When I was canvassing last year, the two big issues in the town were immigration and gay marriage.”

Labour’s Maureen Byrne, a Haverhill town and borough councillor, agreed national issues were behind UKIP’s success, but did highlight problems locally.

“I think with Suffolk County Council and the borough, we don’t get a fair deal. I still believe they vote for UKIP on national issues rather than local issues, though.”

For election to the borough council, Mr Brown got 529 votes, Labour’s Patrick Hanlon got 240 votes, Tory David Roach got 157 votes and Liberal Democrat Ken Rolph got 54 votes.

In the town council election, Mr Firman got 630 votes, Labour’s Elizabeth Smith got 229 votes and Lib Dem Ken Rolph got 107 votes.

8 comments

  • Well done Ukip between the Scots voting Yes in their independence vote and Ukip down South Westminster must be s*****g themselves change is coming you can smell it. All the on line polls have Yes leading by miles

    Report this comment

    Paul Wilson

    Friday, January 10, 2014

  • Well done look out 2015 let get some Great Britain back in this country , and make it our country

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    pandy

    Friday, January 10, 2014

  • The electorate are fed up with being ignored by the main political parties and fed up with the contempt with which they treat the electorate The EU & Local Council elections in May are not far away. I can see a large number of seats going to UKIP

    Report this comment

    BobE

    Friday, January 10, 2014

  • "Roll out the Barrel" !, we've got the blues on the run !!, roll on May 2015 !!

    Report this comment

    freedomf

    Friday, January 10, 2014

  • Well done those who have taken an interest and voted,and congratulations to the UKIP councillor's .Onwards and upwards.

    Report this comment

    SteveL

    Friday, January 10, 2014

  • Again because I Sid something against the Labour Party you did not print

    Report this comment

    pandy

    Saturday, January 11, 2014

  • “When I was canvassing last year, the two big issues in the town were immigration and gay marriage.” Which the Tory party both let happen

    Report this comment

    Hong La

    Monday, January 13, 2014

  • I suspect that this sort of voting behaviour will show at the forthcoming European elections. Very poor turn out but UKIP will get their voters out. They will gain many seats through the apathy we have with all the main parties.

    Report this comment

    The original Victor Meldrew

    Friday, January 10, 2014

The views expressed in the above comments do not necessarily reflect the views of this site

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