The latest Angus Reid polls is showing UKIP catching up with the Lib Dems as only two percentage points now separate the rival parties in a poll which puts Labour on 41%, Conservatives on 32%, Lib Dems on 10% and UKIP on 8%.
This result follows the recent Barnsley bye-election where UKIP displaced the Lib Dems as the second party and last week, in a county council by-election in the former Tory heartland of Tunbridge Wells – UKIP collected 22% of the vote.
Earlier tonight, an elated Nigel Farage, the UKIP party leader – told Eastleigh News :
“This is brilliant news and I’m sure in many areas we will be polling much higher. At this rate we really can be the third party”‘
Outspoken MEP Farage stood in Eastleigh during the 1994 by- election when he beat Screaming Lord Sutch by almost 200 votes. Since then he has supported a number of local issues by signing petitions to keep investment in the Ford Transit Plant and to prevent cuts to the children’s ‘Sure Start’ centres in Hampshire.