Radio Sandwell News

Nigel Farage resigns as UKIP leader as the party vote rises

2015-05-08 13:32:15

Nigel Farage

Nigel Farage has resigned as leader of UKIP having failed to gain the seat of Thanet South, losing out to Conservative candidate Craig Mackinlay.

But Mr Farage, who lost by almost 3,000 votes, said he would consider leadership again in the future.

Speaking about his defeat he insisted he had "never felt happier", with a "weight lifted off his shoulders".

Former Conservative MP Douglas Carswell was re-elected in Clacton, Essex and the party has won a 13% vote share.

Mr Carswell retained the seat - which UKIP won in a by-election last year - with a reduced majority of 3,437.

Nigel FarageMr Farage and comedian Al Murray both lost out to Conservative Craig McKinley in the Thanet South seat

Mr Farage said he would recommend Suzanne Evans, the deputy chairman, be a stand-in leader until the leadership challenge is complete.

UKIP has increased its share of the poll "massively", winning an estimated 13% of votes, prompting calls from party members for a change to the voting system.

In his acceptance speech, Mr Carswell called the UK system "dysfunctional", saying: "Here in our part of Essex people voted for UKIP and they got UKIP.

"Yet across the country, about five million people will have either voted for UKIP or for the Green Party. Those five million people will be lucky to get a tiny handful of MPs in the House of Commons."

Mark Reckless also lost out on a seat to Tory candidate Kelly Tolhurst in Rochester and Strood by 16,009 votes to 23,142.

He had represented the Kent constituency for the Conservatives from 2010 until switching allegiance to UKIP and beating Ms Tolhurst at last November's by-election.

Mr Reckless told reporters: "I always knew what I was doing was a risk but nobody should under-estimate UKIP's achievement."

UKIP have made significant gains in many seats - boosting its share of the vote.

However, the party failed to win the key target seats of Castle Point, in Essex, as well as Labour-held Great Grimsby. It also came third in Thurrock - another high priority seat.

Source: bbc.co.uk

Share this story

Related Stories

News around the web

Brexit: Britain set to agree divorce bill with EU that could cost up to £45bn

Sadiq Khan calls for more gender-neutral toilets in London

David Davis faces 'contempt of Parliament' charge as he refuses to release full Brexit impact papers

Men who sold teenage girl MDMA before she died cleared of manslaughter

His last day at work? Baggage loader filmed drifting at busy Moscow airport (VIDEO)

Alien life? Bacteria ‘that had not been there’ found on ISS hull, Russian cosmonaut says

50k+ passengers affected by Bali airport closure over volcanic ash in airspace (PHOTOS, VIDEOS)

Housing helpline recruits extra advisers in anticipation for soaring demand over Christmas period

Soaring numbers of young people used as 'money mules' by criminals

Syrian army supported by Russian Air Force on offensive in Euphrates valley

Image Slider