Thursday, December 7, 2023

UKIP: What prospects for the “pressure group” in Thurrock for 2014?

A FEW weeks ago, at a full meeting of Thurrock Council, the UKIP councillor for Aveley, cllr Robert Ray rose to his feet to speak. As he rose, the Conservative councillor for Stanford West, cllr Shane Hebb shouted: “Just a pressure group.”

Last week, the “pressure group” won nine seats on Essex County Council.

There were no elections in Thurrock as it is a “fallow” year. But in 2014, there will be local elections as well as european elections. It could be an interesting election.

Thurrock has been one of the seed-beds for UKIP.

In the early days, it seemed to be Clive Broad and his brother Alan, walking the streets of Stifford Clays. In the background was Kerry Smith, now Essex County Councillor Kerry Smith, sitting in the back of Daybreak Windows, printing leaflets.

There were a lot of hard yards walked by UKIP in Thurrock. YT interviewed candidates in Aveley, West Thurrock, Stanford etc. They were greatly boosted by very able candidates such as Tim Aker.

They made the breakthrough in the hotbed of local politics that is Aveley and Uplands when Robert Ray took Aveley by a majority of 47 votes.

Since then, Robert has worked tirelessly for his residents and to raise the profile of UKIP in the borough.

Robert has indicated that his wife may stand as a candidate in 2014.

UKIP were nearly men in a number of wards.567 votes in The Homesteads; 515 votes in Stanford East to name just a few. If the momentum continues, then who knows what they may gain in 2014?

It is certainly food for thought for Thurrocks Conservative leader, Phil Anderson who is up for re-election next year in Stanford East. Cllr Anderson only won by 28 votes in 2010. Labour won the seat by 243 in 2012.

Look at a ward such as Belhus. In 2007, Labour only won it by 27 votes.

Speaking to Kerry Smith on Friday, he was also looking to areas such as Chadwell St Mary and Tilbury for 2014.

Kerry said: “One of the main issues on the doorstep was the economy. Whether it is housewives struggling or teenagers with no prospects. People are hurting.”

Labour sources quoted immigration was top of the agenda time and time again across Essex.

In 2007, 7,149 Thurrock voters were that concerned about immigration that they turned to the BNP. This voters are still out there and if mobilised properly, then it will be interesting to see who they opt for in 2014.

With european elections on the same day, it could be a perfect storm.


  1. In 2014 we will have Aveley, Belhus, Chadwell, Grays Riverside, Grays Thurrock, Little Thurrock Rectory, Little Thurrock Blackshots, Ockendon, Orsett, South Chafford, Stanford East and Corringham Town, Stifford Clays, The Homesteads, Tilbury Riverside & Thurrock Park, Tilbury St Chads, West Thurrock & South Stifford up for election.

    8 Conservative held seats are up for grabs.
    8 Labour held seats are up for grabs.

    The Conservatives have to hold all their seats and gain Labour seats to take control of the Council and likewise Labour have to hold and gain Conservative seats to keep control of the Council.

    Analysis of the election results from Thursday show UKIP are taking votes from both Conservative and Labour.

    The local elections in Thurrock will probably be held on the same day as the euro elections when most political pundits predict UKIP will win and UKIP will be the majority UK party in the European Parliament.

    I predict UKIP will gain seats and be a deciding factor on which party takes other seats – if there is no overall control then any UKIP Councillors could decide which party runs Thurrock Council.

    I would look at the 2009 European Parliament election results for Thurrock.

    If the BNP protest vote transferred to UKIP and both Labour and Conservatives lost the same percentage of votes in 2014 that they have in 2013 to UKIP then UKIP will get more votes than all the other parties in Thurrock put together.

    How will the Conservatives react? They will smear (like the leaflets used against Colin Churchman in Aveley) and they will swing to the far right (like Maureen Pearce’s leaflets in Aveley).

    Politics in Thurrock will be getting a whole lot more interesting and if UKIP continues their upward trend in public support there will be some spectacular upsets in Thurrock next year.

  2. In January 2014 tens, if not hundreds of thousands of Bulgarians and Romanians will be coming to this country to take what they can get. The Tories are saying this won’t happen, as the Labour said about Poland etc. Labour don’t care as they probably see them as potential voters. This is going to happen 4 months before the European and local elections take place. The main parties better start to decide what they are going to do about this one issue alone becasue it is going to play big in the elections.

  3. I wouldn’t trust any of the shower of s*** that are around now of the Blues, Reds and Yellows. Nobody can screw this country up anymore than it has been since 1997.

    People used to vote yellow because “they can’t do any worse than this lot so, why not give them a go” but, what has happened over the past few years is that people have seen how badly the yellow team do in Government so, quite rightly, they have become dis-affected and, switch, probably to the reds.

    So, where do the dis-affected blues go? Off to the right wings and, the first party they come across is? UKIP and, I imagine that if UKIP didn’t fill the void that comes before the extreme right policies of BNP, then people would probably be voting BNP.

    So, unfortunately, the politics of the centre ground just mean that we get more vacuous soundbites such as “dealing with crime and the causes of crime”, “we’re all in this together”, “british jobs for british people”, “gone are the days of boom and bust” etc because each party is trying to please all of the people, all of the time. Yes, there will always be winners and losers but, that is what life is all about.

    Rant over. Thank you for reading.

  4. All the hard work from the Broads and others is starting to pay off.
    Lets hope they start to make inroads into WESTMINSTER

  5. People are calling this a protest vote, I am not too sure anymore, UKIP have certainly made people look at the three major parties in a clearer light

    Libs have lost all credibility with their voters over the complete pack of lies that they have come out with

    Labour have lost credibility over their mishandling of the countries finances and their complete lack of any tangible policies for their next run in.

    Cons were on a hiding to nothing when they came to power due to the mess that was left behind, people do not like cuts and unfortunately any party taking over whould have had to make difficult decisions, Cameron is trying to get the Euro votes by stating that there would be an in/out vote however only if they regain power, why does he not put this into statute so that it is guaranteed no matter which party gets in.

    UKIP are offering a viable alternative, they will soon be the majority in the European parliament, they will continue to do well at local level but national level is a different thing


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