Clacton by-election to take place on David Cameron's birthday

The by-election will be held on 9 October, with Ukip holding a 44-point lead over the Tories in a recent poll

A date has been set for the Clacton by-election following the shock defection by a Conservative MP to Ukip – and it falls on David Cameron’s 48th birthday.

Taking place on 9 October, the election was triggered by the standing down of Douglas Carswell who is set to run again under Ukip.

If Mr Carswell wins, he will be the Eurosceptic party’s first politician to be elected into Parliament.

The result looks like it could swing to the favour of Mr Carswell after a Survation poll by the Mail on Sunday found that Ukip holds a 44-point lead over the Tories in the seat.

A win by Ukip would be a humiliating defeat for the Conservatives, shedding some light on its chances of winning next year’s General Election.

Ukip leader Nigel Farage has said that it would be a “landslide in British politics”.

 

Mr Carswell had been the Conservative MP for Clacton since 2010, with the Tories yet to announce their new candidate for the by-election.

Boris Johnson laughed off the idea that he could put his name forward, telling LBC Radio: “The first objection really, is that I've already whacked in the CV for Uxbridge. It would seem a bit eccentric.”

Mr Carswell left the Conservatives after becoming dissatisfied by its stance on Europe, believing that Prime Minister David Cameron no longer wanted to overhaul its relationship with the EU.

READ MORE: Ukip poised to inflict humiliating defeat on Tories
Tory Eurosceptics to defy Cameron
Carswell’s defection was a nightmare for Cameron

Mr Cameron called Mr Carswell’s decision “bizarre” as he had pledged to offer a referendum on EU membership should the Tories retain power. He also called it “deeply regrettable” and “counterproductive”.

According to the BBC, Labour has nominated Colchester councillor Tim Young as its candidate and the Clacton Conservative Association said it would fight a “robust” campaign.

Upon Mr Carswell’s surprise announcement last week, he said that only Ukip could “shake up that cosy little clique called Westminster”.

“I'm joining Ukip not because I am a conservative who hankers after the past. I want change. Things can be better than this,” he said in a statement on his website.

Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
ebooks
ebooksAn introduction to the ground rules of British democracy
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
SPONSORED FEATURES
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Recruitment Genius: Operations Officer

£15000 - £17000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: It's an exciting time for this ...

Recruitment Genius: Junior / Mid Software Developer

£22000 - £30000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is an exciting opportunity...

Recruitment Genius: Planning Administrator

£16000 - £18000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: We are currently looking to rec...

Recruitment Genius: Media & Advertising Sales Executive

£20000 - £25000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This national business publishi...

Day In a Page

Refugee crisis: David Cameron lowered the flag for the dead king of Saudi Arabia - will he do the same honour for little Aylan Kurdi?

Cameron lowered the flag for the dead king of Saudi Arabia...

But will he do the same honour for little Aylan Kurdi, asks Robert Fisk
Our leaders lack courage in this refugee crisis. We are shamed by our European neighbours

Our leaders lack courage in this refugee crisis. We are shamed by our European neighbours

Humanity must be at the heart of politics, says Jeremy Corbyn
Joe Biden's 'tease tour': Could the US Vice-President be testing the water for a presidential run?

Joe Biden's 'tease tour'

Could the US Vice-President be testing the water for a presidential run?
Britain's 24-hour culture: With the 'leisured society' a distant dream we're working longer and less regular hours than ever

Britain's 24-hour culture

With the 'leisured society' a distant dream we're working longer and less regular hours than ever
Diplomacy board game: Treachery is the way to win - which makes it just like the real thing

The addictive nature of Diplomacy

Bullying, betrayal, aggression – it may be just a board game, but the family that plays Diplomacy may never look at each other in the same way again
Lady Chatterley's Lover: Racy underwear for fans of DH Lawrence's equally racy tome

Fashion: Ooh, Lady Chatterley!

Take inspiration from DH Lawrence's racy tome with equally racy underwear
8 best children's clocks

Tick-tock: 8 best children's clocks

Whether you’re teaching them to tell the time or putting the finishing touches to a nursery, there’s a ticker for that
Charlie Austin: Queens Park Rangers striker says ‘If the move is not right, I’m not going’

Charlie Austin: ‘If the move is not right, I’m not going’

After hitting 18 goals in the Premier League last season, the QPR striker was the great non-deal of transfer deadline day. But he says he'd preferred another shot at promotion
Isis profits from destruction of antiquities by selling relics to dealers - and then blowing up the buildings they come from to conceal the evidence of looting

How Isis profits from destruction of antiquities

Robert Fisk on the terrorist group's manipulation of the market to increase the price of artefacts
Labour leadership: Andy Burnham urges Jeremy Corbyn voters to think again in last-minute plea

'If we lose touch we’ll end up with two decades of the Tories'

In an exclusive interview, Andy Burnham urges Jeremy Corbyn voters to think again in last-minute plea
Tunisia fears its Arab Spring could be reversed as the new regime becomes as intolerant of dissent as its predecessor

The Arab Spring reversed

Tunisian protesters fear that a new law will whitewash corrupt businessmen and officials, but they are finding that the new regime is becoming as intolerant of dissent as its predecessor
King Arthur: Legendary figure was real and lived most of his life in Strathclyde, academic claims

Academic claims King Arthur was real - and reveals where he lived

Dr Andrew Breeze says the legendary figure did exist – but was a general, not a king
Who is Oliver Bonas and how has he captured middle-class hearts?

Who is Oliver Bonas?

It's the first high-street store to pay its staff the living wage, and it saw out the recession in style
Earth has 'lost more than half its trees' since humans first started cutting them down

Axe-wielding Man fells half the world’s trees – leaving us just 422 each

However, the number of trees may be eight times higher than previously thought
60 years of Scalextric: Model cars are now stuffed with as much tech as real ones

60 years of Scalextric

Model cars are now stuffed with as much tech as real ones