On Thursday 2nd August there was a Peterborough City Council by-election in Orton Longueville ward. The election was called due to the resignation of June Bull, one of the three Conservative councillors.
John Okonkowski had held a seat in the ward for UKIP for four years until he lost the seat in May this year. John having decided to retire from frontline politics following his defeat, we were left in a somewhat difficult situation with another election being called so soon after the last one.
In fact, one has to question why Mrs Bull didn’t retire before the May elections so that both seats could have been fought for at the same time. The author suspects that the Tories were worried that John would have held one of them.
Under these difficult circumstances, our candidate Graham Whitehead polled just over 7% and the Conservatives held onto the seat. In May, Labour had only lost to the Tories by 120 votes so made a big deal of it being a “two horse race” which rather squeezed out the other parties.
The local UKIP branches (Peterborough and NW Cambs) joined forces and ran a strong campaign, assisted by our two regional MEPs Patrick O’Flynn and Stuart Agnew.
Our support is still strong in the area, although recent events have knocked people’s confidence in us as a party. However we signed up new local members during the campaign and reinvigorated older ones who are determined to win the ward back and show that UKIP are once again a credible force determined to fight for the local people of Peterborough.
Branch Meeting Copeland Centre, Bretton, PE3 6YJ 7.30 pm
Thursday, Sept 20th
All supporters are invited to join us at our monthly branch meetings.
Come along and introduce yourself; we discuss local issues that affect the people of Peterborough as well as holding a raffle and offering refreshments. The next meeting is advertised below: