March 17 2014 Latest news:
Annabelle Dickson, Political Editor
Monday, December 16, 2013
A rare constituency poll has put the UK Independence Party a just seven percentage points behind Labour, and ahead of the Tories.
A rare constituency poll has put the UK Independence Party just seven percentage points behind Labour, and ahead of the Tories.
Research by the polling firm Survation, commissioned by UKIP party donor Alan Bown, suggests if a general election was held tomorrow Labour candidate Lara Norris would win the seat with 37pc of the vote, with UKIP coming second.
The anti-Europe party has increased its vote in the Norfolk coastal town from 5pc in the 2010 to 30pc, the poll shows.
It is one of eight constituency surveys which have been paid for by UKIP to work out where it should direct resources and stand candidates, in a bid to win its first Westminster seat in 2015.
There is still a question mark over where leader Nigel Farage will stand, but Matthew Smith, UKIP county councillor for Gorleston St Andrew’s division, is currently the prospective candidate for Great Yarmouth and said he would not stand aside.
Mr Smith said: “This poll is encouraging and shows that Labour cannot take for granted that they will win this seat back. Having parachuted in a candidate from Luton, who works for an MP far away from here, they will have a real fight on their hands from myself as a local man and UKIP candidate, not the sitting MP Brandon Lewis, at the next general election”
The first of the results, released last month, showed UKIP were in second place in Thanet South, where Tory MP Laura Sandys last month announced she would stand down at the next election.
Great Yarmouth MP Brandon Lewis would win 28pc of the vote in Great Yarmouth, compared with 43pc in 2010, Survation found. But the Liberal Democrats would take just 4pc of the vote.