by Stephen Tall on August 13, 2014
Today saw the publication by the Electoral Commission, the independent party funding watchdog, of the donations received by the UK’s political parties in the second quarter of 2014 (1 April to 30 June). Here are the figures:
And here’s how the BBC reported it:
UKIP have reported more in political donations than the Lib Dems in a quarter for the first time, according to the Electoral Commission. UKIP reported donations of £1.4m from April to June this year – £170,000 more than reported by the Lib Dems. … The Conservatives reported £7.2m of donations for the second quarter of the year, while Labour reported £3.8m. The period coincided with May’s European elections, in which UKIP got the biggest share of the UK vote, and the party led by Nigel Farage is now aiming to get its first MPs elected at next year’s general election. More than a million pounds declared by UKIP came from a single donor, the Yorkshire businessman Paul Sykes. The Lib Dems said it demonstrated that UKIP was a one-man party – “one man politically and one man financially”. The Lib Dems said their £1.2m in donations came from more individual donors than ever before.
While it’s not great to see Ukip best the party on donations received, it’s not all that surprising it should happen at the time of the European elections. It’s certainly encouraging to hear the Lib Dems report its donations “came from more individual donors than ever before” – as was clear from the latest set of accounts, the party is reliant on donations for much of its core activity.
* Stephen Tall is Co-Editor of Liberal Democrat Voice, and editor of the 2013 publication, The Coalition and Beyond: Liberal Reforms for the Decade Ahead. He is also a Research Associate for the liberal think-tank CentreForum and writes at his own site, The Collected Stephen Tall.