Local English Democrat Chairman defects to Ukip


John Edwards welcomed by Cllr Hugh McGuiness

John Edwards welcomed by Cllr Hugh McGuiness

Eastleigh’s Ukip branch has welcomed another high profile defector from a rival party.

John Edwards – the Chairman of Hampshire English Democrats – has resigned his position and signed up to the Euro-sceptics. Waiting to greet him at Ukip’s Market Street HQ were two of Eastleigh’s former Lib Dem councillors, Glynn Davies-Dear and Andy Moore both of whom joined last month as part of a wave of new members the party picked up during the by-election campaign.

Edwards, who runs a landscaping gardening business in Chandler’s Ford and is a keen local blogger, has had previous experience as a Labour councillor at Rushmore Borough Council.

He was also the agent for English Democrat candidate Michael Walters who polled just 70 votes to finish 12th out of 14 candidates in the recent Eastleigh by-election.

Edwards said the failure of the English Democrats to improve on their 2010 vote had been instrumental in his decision to leave:

“The 80% drop in the vote was a surprise but you could see it coming. The membership in Hampshire has been shrinking – the campaign was difficult.  When you get beaten by the ‘Elvis Loves Pets’ candidate who had distributed only 30 leaflets you know something is wrong”.

On the night Michael Walters said he believed the English Democrats had been unfairly branded as racist and Edwards told Eastleigh News that misplaced negative public perception had also played a part in his resignation.

“The induction of former BNP members has tarnished the image of the party plus there has been some poor decisions made which led to an email being sent to Sinn Fein just over a year ago, which upset a lot of members here in Hampshire. Some resigned. People ask me ‘are you an extremist or a racist ?’ and family and friends have been forced to defend me. I didn’t get into politics for that. I’m not like that”.

During the 2012 Borough elections Edwards had been forced to deny he was a fascist after leaflets alleging links between the English Democrats and the BNP were distributed in Chandler’s Ford in an incident which was investigated by the police. Read more.

Regarding his move to Ukip Edwards told Eastleigh News that he believes EU membership is the biggest issue facing the country and appealed to his former English Democrat colleagues to come and join him:

“You only need to see what is happening at the moment – robbery and theft of savers accounts in Cyprus.  People who think it can’t happen here are living in cloud-cuckoo land”

“Other nationalists need to get their priorities right and come and join Ukip in the fight against the EU”.

Eastleigh Ukip already have two Parish Councillors – Hugh McGuiness (Fair Oak) and Martin Lyon (Bishopstoke) and with the addition of Edwards, Moore and Davies-Dear (who has also served as a Parish and County councillor as well as Mayor) Ukip are saying they can now offer voters credible, experienced candidates rather than just paper ones.

Former Lib Dem and Labour Councillors L-R: Glynn Davies-Dear,John Edwards and Andy Moore

Former Lib Dem and Labour Councillors L-R:
Glynn Davies-Dear, John Edwards and Andy Moore

Chairman Hugh McGuiness told Eastleigh News that he believed Ukip would be able to build on the momentum of the by- election in the forthcoming local campaigns and the general election  in 2015.

First there are the County Council elections to in May where all Eastleigh’s division are currently held by the Lib Dems bar one Conservative seat.

A Ukip activist told me:

 “It’s likely to be a low turnout but our new supporters are enthusiastic so it will suit us

“ The Lib Dems think it’s going to be a re-run of 1994 when they narrowly won the by-election but then went on to win the locals by a landslide. They have a got a shock coming”

Both the by-election Conservative candidate Maria Hutchings and Eastleigh’s Lib Dem leader Keith House have told Eastleigh News that they believe Ukip were the beneficiaries of by-election protest voters and Ukip will slump to its normal level of support in subsequent elections. Cllr House said he considered it was still a ‘two horse race’ in Eastleigh between the Lib Dems and the Conservatives.

Strangely enough, while Eastleigh News was at the Ukip office neither the Conservatives nor Labour were mentioned at all. It’s clear that Ukip now view Eastleigh as a two horse race between themselves and the Lib Dems and have dismissed other opponent’s chances.

Although the local Ukip branch have gained a high profile member they have also lost one in veteran local campaigner Sam Snook who has announced he has resigned from the party.

Snook had campaigned hard for Ukip during the by-election but was disappointed to learn he was unlikely to be selected to run for Ukip in the county elections. He believes he was stood down to make way for one of the newer more experienced recruits.

The irony is that it would seem Mr Snook was instrumental in enticing them to join the party.

The retired council worker has previously stood for Labour and the Lib Dems as well as an Independent so it seems unlikely that he will give up his interest in local politics and will continue to campaign on local issues.

While welcoming John Edwards, Ukip branch Chairman Cllr Hugh McGuinness commented “Obviously this is good news for us” and urged other English Democrats to follow suit, pointing out that Ukip  have a proposal to create an English Assembly out of existing English MPs.

  34 comments for “Local English Democrat Chairman defects to Ukip

  1. Pete Stewart
    March 20, 2013 at 8:14 am

    Alarm bells are ringing in the shadowy corridors of the flag ship “EU Westminster”. A haunting screech of rending steel echoes from somewhere unseen deep below. The whole building violently tilts to the right.

    In the oppressive gloom thrown down by the flickering low-energy (EU) light bulbs, Conservative & Labour globalists scurry backwards and forwards like rats in a sinking EU ship.

    For the look-outs on board, it is obvious that the lessons of history have been ignored and the monstrous ship is now gouging itself slowly and relentlessly along the massive mountain of ice which lies hidden below the surface of the icy cold political waters. I hereby name that iceberg “Eastleigh”.

    Soon the warm, soft, plush Wilton carpeting which lines the corridors is cold and splashing underfoot. In the slow-motion insanity of EU politics, the EU Westminster is sinking fast. As the pleasant EU string ensemble plays “Nearer, My Europe, to Thee”, one by one the cash tills in Euroland fall silent and the banks in Cyprus slam their doors shut.

    Yes! Eastleigh is a bad omen for the Conservatives. Having the Hampshire Chairman of the English Democrats join UKIP may appear insignificant to the casual observer, just like that little bit of ice appeared insignificant to the Captain of the EU Westminster. But it should be obvious by now, that the anti-EU factions, once divided, are beginning to join forces.

    • March 31, 2013 at 10:02 pm

      UKIP Eastleigh, needs a better Chairman.

  2. March 20, 2013 at 10:23 am

    Prior to the election, I was UKIPs Candidate for the County Elections. After the elections our Chairman informed me by telephone, he had found a better Candidate -Andy Moore..

    Play it again Sam.

  3. March 20, 2013 at 3:09 pm

    The proposal for an English Parliament was one of the main reasons I discounted the English Democrats. We’ve got more than enough tiers of Government as it is. We need fewer tiers of Government not more. The EU can certainly go and two of the three tiers at local level should also be scrapped.

    The Wessex Regionalists, wacky as their ideas might seem, have at least got the basic principle right: i.e. less Government, not more…

    The problem that UKIP have is that whilst it now makes perfect sense to vote for them at national level, I can give UKIP a positive vote for Westminster, at local level they can never be more than a protest vote…

    • March 20, 2013 at 7:51 pm

      That’s a strange thing to say Ray. Why wouldn’t UKIP be anything other than a protest vote at a local level? Ramsay Town Council is UKIP controlled and they’ve done such a fantastic job that the FT ran a full page article on it last year. The most important thing about UKIP from a local politics point of view is that there is no party whip so where LibLabCon councillors are told what to think and what to say (and they do it) UKIP councillors are free to do what they think is right and UKIP groups are free to set local policy suited to local needs.

  4. March 20, 2013 at 4:26 pm

    Come and Join the English Democrats I am Oliver Healey one of the younger members only 24 years old. You will be most welcome.

    • Gary
      March 20, 2013 at 5:40 pm

      you must be joking! after the Eastleigh by-election. how many votes did the English Democrats receive, I’m afraid there’s no interest in this party, it’s a shame, but they only have themselves blame. And there are far more important issues now than an English Parliament.

      • March 20, 2013 at 7:16 pm

        Oliver Healey is the Telford & Wrekin English Democrats branch. Not a member of it, he is it. He knows the party is being taken over by racists and that the party is crippled with debt but he says that he isn’t interested in what the party does. Quite bizarre.

    • March 20, 2013 at 7:51 pm

      Oliver, I have supported my husband John for the last 2yrs as treasurer for the ED,s. We have arranged meetings, emailed members, snail mailed members, result? 1reply to attend the last meeting, no support for the Eastleigh campaign, what do you expect? 2years with no support from local members, no attempt to enhance the party status, no passion, but plenty of racist abuse at us and our friends and neighbours, ridicule and ultimately humiliation at the Eastleigh by election, Me? I am totally disallusioned with policitics , I’m OUT.

  5. Sam Snook
    March 20, 2013 at 4:27 pm

    You it right Ray-they will never be local.
    Sam Snook

  6. Sam Snook
    March 20, 2013 at 4:31 pm

    Your right Ray, they will never be local.

  7. Pete Stewart
    March 20, 2013 at 5:48 pm

    Ray…if the OPPRESSED British people, don’t deliver a MASSIVE protest vote to Cameron in May, then he and the rest of the globalist EU ruling elite will think they can just open our borders to Rumania & Bulgaria with impunity. How is he to know if we don’t tell him? So let’s make it a 2 horse race in Eastleigh, between UKIP and the LibDems! That will REALLY worry Cameron.

  8. March 20, 2013 at 7:23 pm

    Actually, John Edwards is slightly out of date with UKIP’s policy on an English Parliament – the latest proposal is to directly elect English, Scottish, Welsh and Northern Irish MPs to national governments and for those national governments to appoint some of their number to form a British government. This is an even further reaching constitutional change than the English Democrats propose, creating a British confederation.

    Ray Turner is also misinformed on an English Parliament – it isn’t about more politicians, it’s about different politicians. It’s also a big cost saver – by slimming down the British government which is far too big already without taking three quarters of their work away from them, we can save almost half a billion a year in costs.

    • mm
      Eastleigh Xpress
      March 20, 2013 at 8:22 pm

      It was Hugh McGuinness Eastleigh’s Ukip chairman who was talking about Ukip’s policy on an English Parliament and I may have misunderstood him.Thanks for the info.

      • March 20, 2013 at 9:51 pm

        Sorry, I got the names confused. Hugh probably quoted the policy that’s just being changed – it’s a brand new policy and it’ll take time for word to get round. It’s probably the most progressive proposal for constitutional reform since the Act of Union.

  9. Pete Stewart
    March 20, 2013 at 8:42 pm

    The EU Plan of the Regions, calls for the break up of the United Kingdom into EU “regions” each “governed” by its own EU Regional Assembly.

    The EU Regions are Scotland, Wales, Ireland plus 9 EU “regions” in what we now know as “England”.

    This is why we have a Welsh and Scottish Assembly but why we will never see them create an English Assemby (because there is no EU Region called “England”).

    They only give us what is in their plan!

  10. Rigel
    March 21, 2013 at 12:59 am

    Pete – you are the first UKIP supporter I have met with significant intelligence . Please explain somethings

    How can someone be a Lib Dem and then a UKIP Councillor ,
    without having zero political knowledge

    How do we ‘save’ all this money bearing in mind the Common Ag Policy and school milk etc..

    Will you react to the fact that the only ‘government’ doing anything to hurt the banks (bonus cap and euro tobin) is the EU and the UK is fighting them !

    Sam Snook should be the UKIP candidate because he has worked hard for them and is a good fit. Moore and Davis-D being absorbed so conveniently before the HCC elections is a big clue to what UKIP is about – they want power and when they get it they will be the same as all the rest because that is all they know and they have no ideas ! – please guys debate me and prove me wrong !

    Look at Italy- Bepe Grillo took 46% of his vote from the left and 40% from the right ???? about the same as UKIP in the by election like italy its a ‘THROW THE BUMS OUT’ vote and it is very dangerous because there are no policies that make sense and no people that make sense in UKIP.

    I cant wait to see the HCC UKIP campaign stuff are they going to campaign to take Eastleigh out of Hampshire and save 60% of our Council tax ?

    • Pete Stewart
      March 23, 2013 at 4:49 pm


      There’s no problem with former LibDem, Labour or Conservative people becoming UKIP councillors.

      A MASSIVE realignment of British politics is underway as people realize the EU is destroying their wealth and jobs and the only answer is to leave the EU as UKIP says.

      • Rigel
        March 26, 2013 at 10:26 am

        please have a go at my questions Pete – tobin tax and CAP , and then briefly explain how the EU is destroying our wealth – thanks

        • Pete Stewart
          March 27, 2013 at 9:01 am

          Certainly Rigel,

          The Tobin tax would damage the City as it damaged Sweden? when they tried it some years back (I think it was Sweden). They concluded it was counter productive for obvious reasons (foreign traders go where there is no Tobin tax)!

          The CAP does immense damage to British agriculture, just as the CFP does immense damage to British fishing. How it does this would fill pages.

          Everywhere one looks, one finds EU lunacy. Cyprus is a perfect illustration! See how they have closed the banks even longer…..to prevent panic!!!! With such fiscal incompetence, how could anybody ever trust the EU?

          As for how the EU is destroying our wealth, that’s easy. Wealth = labour. To prove this succinctly is perhaps not possible, but the reader can easily contemplate the assertion and prove it.

          Ford is a perfect illustration of how the EU is destroying our wealth. By preventing the UK from having protective tariffs, and actively encouraging the import of artificially cheap Turkish Transit vans into the UK, the EU is destroying British jobs and therefore our wealth. There are umpteen other examples.

          Another illustration of how the EU is destroying our wealth, is by imposing open EU borders which permit a mass immigration of artificially cheap EU labour. Again, this destroys British jobs and therefore our wealth.

          Of course some will profit by these globalist profiteering schemes. We see the evidence in the ever widening wealth gap between those with massive capital and those diminishing capital.

          Finally the question of who is opposing these damaging globalist EU schemes. Certainly not Mr Cameron!

          • Rigel
            March 27, 2013 at 10:35 pm

            Pete I’m replying below as width reducing

  11. March 21, 2013 at 10:15 am

    Many thanks for your kind words.

  12. March 21, 2013 at 11:51 pm

    I’m afraid UKIP will never be a threat to any party until it goes Local and starts taking seats from the -Liberal Democrats.It will be a very-very long time before that happens.

    I’m now in Local politics, Local issues, and Local people.

    I would like to thank you all-but that is not possible.

    Best Wishes
    Sam Snook

  13. March 23, 2013 at 4:08 pm

    The reason I Resigned.
    During the by/election-
    I told Glynn-if he wanted to stand as a candidate for the County Council that I would step down.
    He said NO I would rather wait for the Borough Elections.

    A few days after the elections I rang our chairman regards attending the Spring Conference. He said Andy Moore would make a better Candidate and I would be stood down.
    What kind of man is he? Letting me work every day- all day
    then telling me – Andy Moore would make a better Candidate.

    I still don’t know why this happened-could be Glynn and Andy?
    Could be the Chairman and his friend at Bishopstoke or the
    committee. I wonder!
    How ever I will be standing for the County Council elections and
    working in community.
    Sam SNOOK

  14. Rigel
    March 27, 2013 at 11:22 pm

    40% of Eu spending is on CAP and we get a decent chunk of that, CAP cash that we don’t get subsidizes our food, I admit the subsidy system is nuts but you cannot claim we will save 50 million a day without meat and milk doubling in price- some of that money is supporting our farmers.

    The idea that the EU is stealing our wealth is wrong, QE has cost savers (mostly pensioners) 220bn http://www.saveoursavers.co.uk . Wall street and the city of london are the enemy not Brussels , just like Washington and Westminster, Brussels does what they are told but Germany / France /and italy (The Eu)are bringing in a Tobin tax, it’s too small but it hits the right people, they are capping bankers bonuses and all they need is the UK to get on board then all the significant markets in europe will be taxing in an appropriate manner (Sweden in 1984 is not comparable) – as are Hong Kong and Mumbai etc. too big to fail and 20% VAT is killing us Nato wars and derivatives are ruining us but they are not EU policies .

    There is regulation in the US and in Europe but not here, everything you accuse the EU of is done by our banks in the city, wealth does not equal labour apart from in prison perhaps if it did we would be making our own trainers. Who is stopping the banks opening in Cyprus – the EU ? no The ECB, they are not the same thing I agree the EU is nuts sometimes and corrupt BUT so is the UK, in fact it is more responsible for our crisis……. and UKIP are just going on about immigration !

    Grow some balls and take on the real enemy – Unregulated zombie banks and hedge fund hyenas etc

    You are drawing the target around where the arrow landed and you are stopping real progressive politics -good luck with your campaign to remove eastleigh from hampshire and save half the council tax.!

    • mm
      Eastleigh Xpress
      March 28, 2013 at 12:25 am

      Guys we are going way off-topic here!
      But ,as its an interesting diversion here’s my contribution!
      IMO CAP is not fit for purpose.
      The biggest beneficiaries are the biggest landlords. In previous years this has included HM The Queen, Tate & Lyle and other ‘Baron Hardups’ like Prince Charles and the Duke of Westminster all of whom have pocketed millions while struggling farmers get thousands.
      The latest figures on the DEFRA site show Councils and Quangos got the lions share last year.
      In the Eastleigh area only two farmers benefited the rest went to HCC,Fair Oak & Horton Heath P.C, Twyford P.C and the Grasslands Trust – I wouldn’t have thought food production is the main business of any of these organisations.
      As you have pointed out Rigel – forget Cyprus banks – our savers having been getting a haircut since 2008 while Cyprus has been taking the p**** out of our banks with their interest rates.
      For those UK savers who thought they could buck the system by investing over there..I’m afraid its pay back time.
      You would have thought they would have remembered what happened in Iceland.
      Its like deja vu all over again!
      As for VAT, our MP Mike Thornton likes to bang on about lifting low earners out of tax but his government is now taxing them 20% on everything they buy instead of everything they earn.
      Just think, Poundland is really Eightypenceland. 20p on every item you buy is going to the government.
      The point about the VAT hike is ..its not going to come down because of EU policy on ‘VAT harmonisation’.
      Before the coalition achieved power UK had the lowest VAT rate in the EU.
      Highest is currently 27% so we know what we have to look forward to…welcome to Onepoundtwentysevenland!!


  15. Pete Stewart
    March 28, 2013 at 12:54 pm


    With respect, “benefits” are not judged in isolation, but weighed against “costs”.

    If CAP is a “benefit” to British farmers as you suggest, let’s calculate the “cost”.

    Britain’s gross EU Contributions in 2012 were £19 Billion and our total EU rebate in 2012 was £ 8 Billion.

    So that £8 Billion EU rebate has cost us £11 Billion!

    This £11 Billion is what people euphemistically call our “net EU contributions”.

    Let me repeat that: THE COST OF OUR £8 BILLION EU REBATE IS £11 BILLION!!!!!!!!!

    In other words for every £1 received in CAP grants, the British taxpayer has had to pay a 137% service charge (meaning a £2.37 payment to receive £1 in CAP grants)!

    I ask readers: Is that fair? Is it sane? Is it time Mr Cameron handed power to UKIP?

  16. Pete Stewart
    March 29, 2013 at 12:10 pm


    The dictionary defines “wealth” in several ways, i.e.

    a) The people of a community, town, country etc.
    b) Prosperity consisting in abundance of possessions etc.

    The common factor is LABOUR.

    In the universe there are examples everywhere of the convertibility of one thing into another. The most famous example is E = mc2 (the convertibility of “energy” into “mass”).

    Water and ice is another good example.

    The same holds for labour and wealth (they are two forms of the same thing).

    While people’s “will” represent “potential wealth”, it is the LABOUR expended, or the “expression” of their will, which converts that potential wealth into actual wealth or material possessions (what we call “wealth”).

    Therefore to obstruct the use of labour is to prevent the creation of wealth. Anything which destroys ACTUAL labour destroys wealth. Hence artificially cheap foreign goods and artificially cheap foreign labour, which destroy British jobs, also destroy British wealth.

    Do you wish to debate the pros and cons of “charity” because that is what our government is doing, courtesy of our workers. They are GIVING away our jobs to the developing world as an act of charity without being asked if it is acceptable.

    • mm
      Eastleigh Xpress
      April 4, 2013 at 7:52 pm

      My concise OED dictionary says nothing about wealth being
      “The people of a community, town, country”. In my dictionary that is actually the definition of the word “Population”!

  17. Sam Snook
    March 29, 2013 at 5:12 pm

    Bishopstoke Parish Council check the results.

  18. March 31, 2013 at 5:31 pm

    Peter Davis, The Mayor of Doncaster has resigned from the English Democrats, claming there has been a big influx of new
    members from the “British National Party.

    • April 3, 2013 at 4:33 pm

      Dont let UKIP be NEXT.
      BNP members flocking to the English Democrats!!!!!
      Sam Snook

  19. April 4, 2013 at 3:00 pm

    The English Democrats are not a far right Party (?) But so many EDP members have gone over to the BNP in the last few months that there very composition of the party has changed. EDP Leader Robin Tilbrook has repeatly said, that in joining the EPD these people will have to accept their new parties policies and political out-look. I might believe that if we were talking about one or two, might be right. But we are talking about 100s of former BNP members are prepared to stand as EDP candidates, there must be many more who have switched without going public.

    • mm
      Eastleigh Xpress
      April 4, 2013 at 8:15 pm

      I’m not sure whether you are claiming BNP members are joining EDP or vice versa! If you are asking are the EDP are a ‘far right’ party then certainly the EDP members I have met bear out their claim that they are no further to the right than the SNP or Plaid Cymru. In his book ‘the lion and the unicorn.’ George Orwell argued that it was possible to be a patriot, a nationalist and a socialist.
      People can and do change their minds about politics and political parties as we have seen here and you have done so yourself.
      EDP only polled around 70 votes in the Eastleigh by-election and the BNP have never stood a candidate here so its not really a relevant topic for a website about Eastleigh and I’m closing the thread but thanks to all for interesting contributions.

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