October 23 2014 Latest news:
Sam Blewett, Reporter
Friday, May 23, 2014
Alby Tebbutt, after finding out he had lost to the Romford Conservatives, revealed that Ukip leader Nigel Farage had personally invited him to stand in the election.
Mr Tebbutt was once a councillor with the Romford Conservative Association until he was expelled by Cllr Osman Dervish when the newcomer took the helm as chairman.
Cllr Osman Dervish won in Pettits after he beat Mr Tebbutt by more than 500 votes.
Despite losing out, the Ukip candidate described the result as “fantastic” as he received a considerable 1,367 votes in the Tory stronghold and said that he had “no ambition to go back as a councillor”.
He said: “I was asked to go back as a councillor by Nigel Farrage and Cllr Laurence Webb [Havering’s Ukip leader].
“My main objective was to sort out Andrew Rosindell [Romford MP] and his colleagues who have destroyed the Conservative party which I have worked for my whole life.
“It’s fantastic if I can get nearly 1,400 votes on a 50 per cent turnout.”
Cllr Webb also celebrated Mr Tebbutt’s result.
He said: “That was one of the Tory’s safest seats but Alby was just 400 votes from the Tories.”
He added that he believes this party has made the ward a “marginal seat”.
Ukip had hoped to make an impact in the ward by fielding three candidates but Ukip’s Cllr Ted Eden will no longer sit in the council as he lost with 1,498 votes while the party’s third candidate, Trina Birch, received 1,488 votes.
Mr Rosindell saw the Conservative hold as a good sign for the rest of the constituency.
He said: “I’m very pleased. Despite all the efforts to derail the Conservatives in Romford so far that hasn’t happened.
“I wish Alby all the best for the future, I have got no axe to grind with Alby.”
Cllr Osman Dervish said it was a “tough” campaign but he anticipated the hold.
Cllr Webb ruled out working in a coalition with the Romford Conservatives.
“I won’t work with the Romford Conservatives because I don’t think they are real Conservatives,” he said.
Phillipa Crowder received the highest number of votes with 2,102 while Cllr Dervish and Cllr Robby Misir were close together on 1,887 and 1,827 respectively.
View our live blog HERE for updates throughout the day.