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Former UKIP officers accuse party of ‘grossly exaggerating’ membership numbers

27 Mar 2023 3 minute read
Neil Hamilton. Picture by Derek Bennett (CC BY 2.0).

Former UKIP officers have raised concerns that “dishonest propaganda” is “grossly exaggerating” the party’s political relevance and membership numbers.

Despite social media posts seemingly celebrating the party’s membership growth, former UKIP directors have claimed membership is far lower than the party will admit.

Recent UK-wide voting-intention polling has shown current support for UKIP is at 0.1%-0.3% and the party is finishing last in almost all of the few elections it contested over the past year.

The party which is led by UKIP Member of the Senedd for Mid and West Wales from 2016 to 2021 and former Conservative MP Neil Hamilton, currently has less than five functioning branches, down from over 400 and has only five elected representatives, all set to be out of office on 4 May.

A pinned post published to Newbury UKIP Twitter reads, “It’s brilliant to see our membership grow” despite the fact the party’s own accounts document the number of members at 3,888 as of December 2020 – down from 15,674 the year prior.

The Newbury UKIP social media page also states it now covers Berkshire, Oxfordshire, Buckinghamshire and Thames Valley, and elsewhere admits it set up webpages for Surrey and Sussex – mergers deemed as “inconsistent with a healthy membership” by former UKIP officers.

The party held its Annual National Conference at The Vine Hotel in Skegness in October last year with a total attendance visibly fewer than 50 members.

During the event, a slide used in a presentation by Eastern Regional Chairman, Mr Fullerton, mentions that UKIP’s current total membership is 2,000 – 3,000.

Although accounts have not yet been filed for 2022, ex UKIP director, Alun J. Elder-Brown – who recently resigned from all his UKIP positions – disclosed via Twitter that current membership actually stands at “just over 1000”.

Senior officials who’ve left UKIP have stated that even such a low total of 1,000 was likely the “bosses’ exaggeration” but even if accurate would include members either deceased or with no interest in the current defunct party.

The former officers also claimed current membership numbers include lapsed members automatically granted 3-month extensions, or even much longer so as to bolster the count.

Saboteurs

During UKIP’s recent annual conference, a journalist reporting on the event claimed members of the national executive committee asked if he would consider joining and even offered to waive the £30 annual fee.

Former directors and members of UKIP claim an increasing proportion of free memberships along with infiltrators and saboteurs becoming members is leading to inaccurate numbers.

It’s thought that true UKIP activists numbers are fewer than 50 in the UK which is consistent with evidence from the 13 parliamentary by-elections held after 2020, five of which were not contested by UKIP.

UKIP’s official webpages reveal spiralling vacancies along with a declining number of officers carrying out multiple roles within the party.

In 2022’s local elections, UKIP contested 28 seats out of 7,000 (0.4%), finishing second-from-last in one contest and last in all the others.

The former UKIP officers said: “In May’s 8,500 seats’ elections, we are sure it won’t find even 28 candidates, as will be confirmed on 5 Apr.

“Why do they still bother? Is it the prospect of legacies and damaging, by association, the prospects of Reform UK?”

Neil Hamilton was approach by Nation.Cymru for comment.


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Dai Rob
Dai Rob
1 year ago

UKIP lying…..? Noooooooooooooooooooo……………………………………..

Matt
Matt
1 year ago
Reply to  Dai Rob

No, never!!!
Who would ever even have considered such a possibility!!!
I mean, Brown Envelopes Cash fer Questions never happened!!!

Marc
Marc
7 months ago
Reply to  Dai Rob

Never……………………………!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
IMPOSSIBLE!!
Ask Rogue Builder UKIP Party Chairman Ben Walker, now a Justice of the P!ss, bringing the judiciary into disrepute just like with everything else, why he packed UKIP to the brim of the telephone box with a parade of fellow nhroseddwyr……………………………. drug-dealers, conmen, insurance fraudster………….was he bribed to destroy UKIP?
google.com/search?q=Ben+Walker+bribe

Fi yn unig
Fi yn unig
1 year ago

When the third letter of UKIP stands for Independence, it is hardly surprising that the term ‘dishonest propaganda’ is attached to it. The very name of the party is a lie given that the country it bats for is and always has been Independent. The hypocritical irony is that it aggressively sets out to deny Independence to other countries. It has no business using the word.

Seasaim liom féin
Seasaim liom féin
1 year ago
Reply to  Fi yn unig

No, mate, the country including Ulster was one of dozens of vassal states of the EU. The original UKIP had valid reasons for its existence and name. Agree with you now that’s not true. The scamsters run a BUNCO-BOOTH to give the impression UKIP still exists. Puke-KIP is a poundshop BNP, only there to swipe bequests and donations from the uninformed. Which conmen pocket, laughing all the way to the bank. The few remaining loyal hangers-on are senile or fruitcakes. Now several kids too, dumb enough not to google those in charge and realise they are crooks. But their biggest… Read more »

David
David
1 year ago

UKIP & SNP inflating membership numbers!!

Leigh Richards
Leigh Richards
1 year ago
Reply to  David

Well one of them has over 70,000 members, is the largest party in its country and the government of its nation. The other could fit its entire active membership on a national express coach, doesnt hold office at any level in the uk and its candidates have performed dismally in every election theyve contested during the last 4 years

Marc
Marc
1 year ago

“The party held its Annual National Conference at The Vine Hotel in Skegness “ actually it was in the telephone box just outside The Vine Hotel Skegness

Salty Girl
Salty Girl
1 year ago
Reply to  Marc

I was a kipper back when there was one branch for every Westminster constituency. Berkshire had 8 branches. Reading this (great investigative journalism!!) article. I was piqued to hear of one branch covering not only Newbury and Berkshire, though one is in the other, but also Oxfordshire, Bucks, Thames Valley, Surrey and Sussex, and congratulates the party for growing its membership! I searched and found it at ukindependencepartythamesvalley.org. A right dog’s dinner! It suggests at the top that the party Head Office is Windsor Castle and halfway down it identifies the Party Leader as “King of the Rats”! Thinking it… Read more »

Paul Hoskins
Paul Hoskins
1 year ago

UKIP have become an irrelevancy because the Tories subsumed their policies and followers. Thus becoming the crypto fascist cult we see at present.

Pleb from the South
Pleb from the South
1 year ago
Reply to  Paul Hoskins

Only buffoons and criminals left there, now.
What baffles so many of us is how come the squire in the photo hasn’t yet had his collar felt and served a few years of porridge. He or his missus must still hold the keys to too many Tory skeleton closets

Robert O.
Robert O.
1 year ago

This scoop rings true. In my county, there used to be a dozen vibrant UKIP branches. Unless you call one person phoning desperately and unsuccessfully to get someone else to attend his zoom meeting a “branch”, there are now none in Kent at the time I quit. They still keep spamming me with rubbishy begging e-mails.They’ve installed an ex-BigBrother ignorant madwoman as deputy leader, seriously, google for REBECCA JANE MENTAL ILLNESS and you’ll see what I mean. This rump party is deeply embarrassing.

Serena Denston
Serena Denston
1 year ago
Reply to  Robert O.

Yes, Rebecca Jane, pleasant enough though she is, was the deciding factor for me. You cannot take someone with fake appendages as a serious party leader. The current de facto leader has deliberately stripped the party of any serious members by threats and inactivity. What were once busy, active branches have been left to rot then closed down, and their replacements are now stretched over several counties. The leadership talks well but does nothing. Such a sad end to a great movement.

Steve Woods
Steve Woods
1 year ago

Correction: disgraced former Conservative MP.

Dai Thomas
Dai Thomas
1 year ago
Reply to  Steve Woods

In its death throes, having him as leader. Whistleblower Elder Brown even tried to join the Cons but is still listed as Ukip’s director, that’s how desperate for members they must be! I found online this written by him in March, “The de jure leader isn’t actually the problem but the de facto leader, who just also happens to be the de facto national campaign manager, treasurer (trust me, the actual Treasurer is an honorific appointment), general secretary, party secretary and (non contributing) Patrons Coordinator (officially that was me but all decisions were made by the ‘honorary gold patron’ (Hamilton… Read more »

ExKipper
ExKipper
1 year ago

A Chairman ( rogue builder ) who holds most of the party offices. Who exaggerated his rank and service record ( do you get medals for counting paper clips ) Falling membership numbers, probably under a thousand. A so called leader condemned a liar following a failed libel suit. This is a hollow shell of a once effective political movement which will soon have no elected representation. The rabble now in charge deposed two potentially effective leaders in order to assume control for their own ends. Hopefully fUkip will shortly be put out of its misery and be consigned to… Read more »

James Deverell
James Deverell
1 year ago

UKIP is now dead, a fake Party whose sole purpose is to elicit funds, donations and legacies for a few at the top to line their pockets with. The real UKIP does not exist in any meaningful sense except to fleece the naive. Fake UKIP has only a hand full of members and only pretends to fight elections and invariably comes last or close to last. The successor to the real UKIP of old is the Brexit Party now called Reform UK and Brexiteers should put their efforts and money behind that organisation.

Rodger White
Rodger White
1 year ago

I do wonder where all the money being left to UKIP in wills etc is being spent given the basically 0 activism.

Viking Lady
Viking Lady
1 year ago

It seems like the Tories have infiltrated UKIP to turn it into controlled opposition.

Dalila
Dalila
1 year ago

When are UKIP going to admit their failure. Batten had 30,000 members and growing fast, at locals, UKIP nearly all came 2nd, voters were realising they were the answer. This shower have reduced UKIP membership to just double figures. So many good people gone to waste. The idiots running UKIP now need to give the party back to the people who know how to run it and make it a success again. Have they no shame over what they have done to UKIP?

Mike Shaw
Mike Shaw
1 year ago

I’m pretty sure that no one in a position of power, influence or authority within UKIP would do or say anything to cause even the slightest suspicion of a lowering of standards. It would actually be impossible at the present time!

Defence of Free Speech
Defence of Free Speech
1 year ago

Have many reader responses been deleted? Seems like it.

I guess it’s a tag-team of censors from the Party which claims to be the only Champion of Free Speech, trying desperately to suppress the truth by mass-flagging.

Yes, all four of the heroes must be busy at it. 🙂

pepperal
pepperal
1 year ago

Amazing that UKIP is still alive, perhaps all they can do is invent membership figures!

Old Ned
Old Ned
1 year ago

Shame. Another independent party destroyed by tory infiltration, and greed by those who have wriggled to the top of the party. Lies, deception, and the ability to squander bequests from deceased previous members kept in ignorance, is all we seem to get from ukip these days. Sod all political activity. Shame.

Salty Girl
Salty Girl
1 year ago
Reply to  Old Ned

Ned, when you wrote “squander”, did you mean “pocket”? They have lots of form.

Pleb from the South
Pleb from the South
1 year ago

Desperate for numbers and cred they let even me into their ruling committee!
I made poking around the election that gave Hamilton legitimacy my first port of call.
Except the members voted for the boring beancounter in France instead.
But when one’s Enforcer does the counting, victory was assured.
As soon as I quit, they made sure nothing will ever be fixed. The committee is no longer the executive, merely a council to advise the bosses.

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