Local election results 2014: David Cameron told to deal with Ukip or take a tougher line on immigration

 

whitehall editor

David Cameron is facing pressure from some on the Tory right to do a deal with Ukip or take a tougher line on European Union immigration to prevent the party haemorrhaging support that could cost it the general election.

As recriminations began following a poor night for the Conservatives, the Prime Minister said he still believed he could win another term in Downing Street next year. But he conceded that the public were “frustrated” with the political establishment’s failure to address their concerns.

With some areas still to declare the Conservatives had lost control of 11 councils and had lost 190 seats. The Tories were predicted to get around 29 per cent share of the vote – up slightly from last year – but down from 2012 when the party got 31 per cent.

Among Conservative losses were several important battlegrounds which the party will need to win if it is to have any chance of a majority in 2015.

The party lost control of the bellweather councils of Crawley, West Sussex, Basildon in Essex as well as the London borough of Hammersmith and Fulham where Labour took 11 Conservative seats. However, there was better news in Trafford, Greater Manchester where they saw off a Labour challenge.

 

The right-wing backbench MP Jacob Rees-Mogg suggested it was time for his party to reconcile itself with Ukip and its supporters. “If we look at the results that are coming through, the small ‘c’ conservative faction of British politics is picking up a very large share of votes – and in a first-past-the-post system, if they don’t get those votes into one pot, both sides end up losing,” he said.

“I think the first task is to win our friends in Ukip back. How do we get people who voted Ukip today to vote Conservative in the general election next year?

“If we don’t get them back we will find that we lose seats that have a small ‘c’ conservative majority – so that’s a real challenge for the party.”

Read more: Full local election results

Another Conservative backbencher Douglas Carswell said: “The two of them need to do a deal. If the alternative is Ed Miliband as prime minister, and no chance of a referendum, surely a pact is worth considering?”


The right-wing Tory Bow Group called for a members’ election within six months to replace Grant Shapps as party chairman, and reform to make the party more democratic and in-tune with its members. “The Conservative Party has ignored the rise of Ukip and is haemorrhaging voters as a result, but the fundamental problem is that it has ignored Conservative principles, its members and voters for too long,” said Bow Group chairman Ben Harris-Quinney.

But Mr Cameron ruled out a deal and said his party’s job was to win back Ukip voters. “People want us to deliver,” he said. “The economy is growing, we are creating jobs, but we have got to work harder and we have got to really deliver on issues that are frustrating people and frustrating me, like welfare reform and immigration and making sure people really benefit from this recovery.

Read more: Labour and Tories left reeling
Coalition tries to shift focus
Labour takes Cameron's 'favourite' council
Farage: 'The fox is in the henhouse'
Ukip: London 'too educated and cultured' to vote for us
'I'm not resigning' says Clegg
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: Clinical Lead / RGN

£40000 - £42000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is an exciting opportunity...

Recruitment Genius: IT Sales Consultant

£35000 - £40000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This IT support company has a n...

Recruitment Genius: Works Engineer

Negotiable: Recruitment Genius: A works engineer is required in a progressive ...

Recruitment Genius: Trainee Hire Manager - Tool Hire

£21000 - £25000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Our client is seeking someone w...

Day In a Page

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
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
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
10 best PS4 games

10 best PS4 games

Can’t wait for the new round of blockbusters due out this autumn? We played through last year’s offering
Migrant crisis: UN official Philippe Douste-Blazy reveals the harrowing sights he encountered among refugees arriving on Lampedusa

‘Can we really just turn away?’

Dead bodies, men drowning, women miscarrying – a senior UN figure on the horrors he has witnessed among migrants arriving on Lampedusa, and urges politicians not to underestimate our caring nature
Nine of Syria and Iraq's 10 world heritage sites are in danger as Isis ravages centuries of history

Nine of Syria and Iraq's 10 world heritage sites are in danger...

... and not just because of Isis vandalism
Girl on a Plane: An exclusive extract of the novelisation inspired by the 1970 Palestinian fighters hijack

Girl on a Plane

An exclusive extract of the novelisation inspired by the 1970 Palestinian fighters hijack
Why Frederick Forsyth's spying days could spell disaster for today's journalists

Why Frederick Forsyth's spying days could spell disaster for today's journalists

The author of 'The Day of the Jackal' has revealed he spied for MI6 while a foreign correspondent
Markus Persson: If being that rich is so bad, why not just give it all away?

That's a bit rich

The billionaire inventor of computer game Minecraft says he is bored, lonely and isolated by his vast wealth. If it’s that bad, says Simon Kelner, why not just give it all away?
Euro 2016: Chris Coleman on course to end half a century of hurt for Wales

Coleman on course to end half a century of hurt for Wales

Wales last qualified for major tournament in 1958 but after several near misses the current crop can book place at Euro 2016 and end all the indifference
Rugby World Cup 2015: The tournament's forgotten XV

Forgotten XV of the rugby World Cup

Now the squads are out, Chris Hewett picks a side of stars who missed the cut
A groundbreaking study of 'Britain's Atlantis' long buried at the bottom of the North Sea could revolutionise how we see our prehistoric past

Britain's Atlantis

Scientific study beneath North Sea could revolutionise how we see the past
The Queen has 'done and said nothing that anybody will remember,' says Starkey

The Queen has 'done and said nothing that anybody will remember'

David Starkey's assessment
Oliver Sacks said his life has been 'an enormous privilege and adventure'

'An enormous privilege and adventure'

Oliver Sacks writing about his life