Essex: UKIP leader at County Hall rejects council leader’s claim his party has ‘one trick pony policies’

County Hall politics hots up in spat between UKIP and Conservatives in aftermath of the Douglas Cars

County Hall politics hots up in spat between UKIP and Conservatives in aftermath of the Douglas Carswell defection. - Credit: Lucy taylor

The leader of Essex County Council has described UKIP as being in a “state of chaos” in Tendring.

David Finch, Conservative leader of Essex County Council.

David Finch, Conservative leader of Essex County Council. - Credit: Archant

The comments came after Roger Lord, UKIP’s candidate for the Clacton Parliamentary seat before Conservative MP Douglas Carswell’s shock defection to the party last week, sensationally resigned his Brightlingsea seat at County Hall and quit UKIP yesterday.

David Finch, leader of the Tory-run county council, said: “This just proves that UKIP are in complete disarray in Essex and their one trick pony policies are starting unravel as they fall out amongst themselves.

“This will be a bitter blow to their Clacton campaign and the wheels are off the Carswell bandwagon.

“The Conservatives in Essex have a strong track record and we shall be fighting the county council by-election hard and putting that strong record forward with well thought out policies on every issue that directly affects the taxpayers of this great county.”

However Jamie Huntman, the UKIP leader at County Hall, replied: “With regards to Roger Lord, sometimes in life we have to put our personal differences aside for the greater good. Our goal must be Westminster.


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“David Finch, remembered as the man who let disgraced Lord Hanningfield off the hook, should leave his well-feathered nest and join us if he wants to address the concerns of the people of Essex.

“His suggestion that we have one trick pony policies completely disregards the people’s concerns on immigration and Europe and is why the Tories are filled with politicians who are all career and no conviction.

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“Our support and membership in Essex continues to grow at the same rate the Conservative’s is plummeting. We will lead the way in Essex.

“It is time for change and the People’s Army marches on.”

The spat came as the Conservative Party confirmed it would be holding an open primary to select its candidate for the Clacton by-election – a policy called for by Mr Carswell for several years and in contrast to the enforced candidate selection made by UKIP.

Tendring District Council has said it is ready to run the poll on October 9.

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