Ex-UKIP chairman sets up new Hampshire political party
A NEW political party has been set up in Hampshire with the aim of giving independents a stronger platform.
Hampshire Independents, set up by Alan Stone, will bid for seats in local authorities across the county, serving as a springboard for independent candidates.
Among the party’s principles are improving Hampshire’s recycling, improving infrastructure before building more houses and controlling social housing schemes.
Boasting the mantra of ‘genuinely local politics’, Mr Stone said: ‘Our group has no national political affiliation, we are very much our own people.
‘As such, we can represent local areas and views to a much greater extent than any of the national parties.
‘Hampshire Independent councillor candidates are all independently minded but following a united core of decency – a belief that the individual matters; that local council staff should be there to not just dictate rules but to assist communities to resolve their own issues, like transport links, parking problems or child care solutions.’
Mr Stone was chairman of UKIP’s Hampshire branch in 2015.
He later left the party and contested the 2019 general election in Basingstoke as an independent candidate, after the Brexit Party dropped out in the area.
In that election, he took 1.4 per cent of the total votes.
Mr Stone added: ‘Getting residents more involved with decision-making will bring better ideas and solutions, which deal with the quirks of each town or street.
‘There is no perfect place and no perfect answers but together, we can make life better.’
Councillor Claire Udy from the Progressive Portsmouth People Group says the more independents standing for councils, the better.
A former independent herself, she added that people should be wary of who they’re voting for.
She said: ‘Being an independent doesn't tie you to a particular colour, and in turn gives you more power to accomplish your aims.
‘We have the guts to put our cards on the table and not be opposition for opposition sake.
‘Considering that the Hampshire Independents is run by a ex-UKIP chairman doesn't give me any particular hope but that being said, we have to be wary that defunct right-wing parties are rebranding themselves in order to appeal to appear anti-establishment.’
To keep up with the Hampshire Independents, people can follow @Hants_ind_party on Twitter.