UKIP candidate confirms he’s running a ‘soft’ campaign

UKIP’s candidate in Croydon Central has confirmed that he is running a subdued election campaign, and claims it does not matter whether Gavin Barwell or Sarah Jones wins the seat in next week’s General Election. According to Peter Staveley, both Labour’s Jones and Tory Barwell “will have just as disastrous effect on the constituency and that democracy will be the poorer because of it”.

Peter Staveley:  UKIP's canvassing-lite candidate in Croydon Central

Peter Staveley: UKIP’s canvassing-lite candidate in Croydon Central

Most observers agree that a properly run UKIP campaign in Croydon Central would be more likely to take votes from the Conservatives than Labour; therefore, a “soft” UKIP campaign – what’s been called “Blukip” – might just help Barwell hang on to what has become a tightly contested marginal seat.

Staveley was responding to Inside Croydon‘s report of his remarks made at a hustings event on Monday, when the UKIP candidate said that he would not “waste his time and money” canvassing against Barwell, the Tory MP for the constituency, and the landowning Whitgift Foundation, since 2010.

Today, Staveley said, “With the massive resources that both Labour and Conservatives are putting into Croydon Central, I said that UKIP would not attempt to fight either of them.

“Much as you would like there to be one, there is no pact between myself (or UKIP) and Gavin Barwell or any other candidate or any party. Instead UKIP and the UKIP branch decided to concentrate UKIP’s efforts into Croydon South, which is what we have been doing.”

UKIP’s candidate in Croydon South is Kathleen Garner, who gave an underwhelming performance at her constituency hustings last night, where her most interesting intervention was to admit that she showers with a bucket.

Staveley, who is chairman of UKIP’s Croydon Central and South branch. He said: “My time has been filled doing numerous media interviews and 12 hustings, which are far more than most other UKIP candidates have been asked to do.

“I am pleased that you think that my campaign will have an effect on the outcome in Croydon Central. However, I think that shows more about how ridiculous our first-past-the-post voting system is than any ‘king-making’ powers arising from my campaign.” Last year, Staveley stood in his home ward of Addiscombe in the local elections where he finished seventh in the poll, behind the Labour and Conservative candidates, with 659 votes

“Ultimately I do not care whether Sarah or Gavin wins the constituency either will have just as a disastrous effect on the constituency and that democracy will be the poorer because of it.”

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News, views and analysis about the people of Croydon, their lives and political times in the diverse and most-populated borough in London. Based in Croydon and edited by Steven Downes. To contact us, please email inside.croydon@btinternet.com
This entry was posted in 2015 General Election, Croydon Central, Gavin Barwell, Peter Staveley, Sarah Jones MP and tagged , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

4 Responses to UKIP candidate confirms he’s running a ‘soft’ campaign

  1. Looked at from Mr Staveley’s point of view, he is right surely. If his party’s intention is to upset the Tory apple cart and if Tory voters are more likely to change to Ukip than Labour ones, then concentrating his limited resources in Croydon South will pay better dividends.
    He might even pick up some disgruntled Labour voters in Croydon South who are deeply underwhelmed by the non-campaign of Labour’s Ms Benn (her late grandfather must be revolving in his grave at a rate of knotts).

    • Do get in touch, David, anyone, when you notice any evidence of any campaigning in Croydon South by UKIP.

      • Peter Rogers says:

        Or campaigning by anyone. I’ve sat by the door questions in hand waiting for someone to come and ask for my vote. Do Croydon South even know there’s an election going on?
        One day in the future old folk will say ‘ooh are you that nice Mr Ottaway?’ and Philp’s will have to say yes to save confusion

  2. Rod Davies says:

    I did wonder why there hasn’t been much UKIP activity in Croydon Central. I always felt that Peter Staveley might do well, particularly away from the town centre and the areas immediately adjacent to it.
    It leaves me wondering whether a deal has been struck between the Conservative Party and UKIP in regards to Croydon Central? Perhaps rather reminiscent of the behind closed doors deals done in smoky backrooms that the old Conservative Party used to regularly accuse Labour of.
    I wonder what Mr Barwell and the Croydon Conservative Party have agreed to with UKIP to persuade UKIP to effectively withdraw from the race. I think Conservative Party supporters have a right to know just what they are voting, as UKIP and Tory Party policies are not the same.
    UKIP policy on social housing is that there needs to be a massive construction programme started on brownfield sites, that recognises that it is the lack of supply in the market that has driven up rents and prices, as well as claiming that immigration has made this worse.
    On this critical issue that affects us all in one way or another, UKIP and the Conservative Party are diametrically opposed. The Conservatives want to adopt policies that would ultimately reduce the volume of available social housing.
    While UKIP may not have had a chance of winning in Croydon Central, their proportion of the vote would have had influence and we could have expected a review of Croydon’s strategy for social housing and the planning protections for the leafy suburbs that restrict affordable housing supply. By doing an apparent deal with Gavin Barwell, Peter Staveley and UKIP generally have done Croydon Central a disservice.

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