July 24 2014 Latest news:
Sam Blewett, Reporter
Friday, May 23, 2014
Leaders and candidates are predicting Ukip to win a large number of councillors with rival leaders “nervous” about their prospects.
A Ukip candidate, who has been peering over the ballot counter’s shoulders, is predicting that the euro-sceptic party will win one seat in every ward in the Romford constituency.
The candidate said: “You don’t like to be confident but it’s looking like we are doing very well in the polls.”
Havering’s Labour leader Cllr Keith Darvill is “nervous” about the count and believes Ukip may steal seats off of them.
“Looking at the way it’s going Ukip are going to make gains. We’re just trying to hold on to what we have got,” he said.
He also predicted that the Residents’ Association will do well.
Ukip leader Cllr Laurence Webb is optimistic about the result after the party scored well elsewhere.
Conservative council leader Cllr Steven Kelly is fearful that the Tories will lose councillors.
“Why should Havering be different from Fulham and Merton,” he said speaking about the areas where Conservatives made shock losses.
“It’s pretty likely we will lose seats. It’s councillors in a mid-term election. Historically that party loses seats.”
If the Conservatives do not get a majority there will be heated debate between the leaders.
Cllr Kelly suspects there will be “frantic phone calls” to decide which party will control the council.
He added that the voter turn out yesterday appears low at perhaps just 30 per cent.