Labour 'gains 150,000 new members' as Jeremy Corbyn prepares for new election battle

Party had been expected to sustain heavy losses but results vindicated Islington North MP's heavily maligned leadership

Lucy Pasha-Robinson
Wednesday 14 June 2017 16:10
comments
Jeremy Corbyn says there may be another election later this year

Labour has reportedly gained 150,000 new members after Jeremy Corbyn’s party made historic gains in the general election.

Membership soared following Friday’s result, according to Labour MP Richard Burgon, which saw Theresa May’s Conservatives fail to win an outright Commons majority.

Labour had been expected to sustain heavy losses but the results vindicated Mr Corbyn’s heavily-maligned leadership after the party put in its best performance in years, winning a total of 262 seats.

Google searches for how to join the party surged following the shock result, which saw Labour gain 30 seats. The new membership applications have brought total membership numbers to 800,000. Conservative Party membership figures were just under 150,000 in December 2016.

Mr Corbyn said the election signified a rejection of the “politics of fear” and said "we are ready any time” to govern, should Ms May's premiership collapse.

“We have a chaotic situation with a government that sought reelection on the basis of wanting a bigger mandate and a bigger majority to bring stability to British politics,” Mr Corbyn told the Andrew Marr Show.

“We are quite ready and able to put forward a serious programme that obviously has massive support in this country.”

It comes after Mr Corbyn confirmed he would offer a substantial amendment to the Queen’s Speech that he will attempt to push through Parliament.

Ms May will be forced to rely on support from Northern Ireland’s Democratic Unionist Party’s (DUP) ten MPs to form a minority Government.

Downing Street initially said a "confidence and supply" arrangement had been reached with the DUP, which will be put to the Cabinet for discussion on Monday.

But no deal has yet been finalised and talks on the arrangement will continue during the week as Ms May desperately tries to shore up her position.

The strength of any deal looks set to be tested when the Commons meets, with Jeremy Corbyn vowing to try to bring down the Government by defeating Mrs May in Parliament and insisting: "I can still be prime minister.”

The figure tweeted by Mr Burgon was later found to be false, and was linked potentially to an email Mr Corbyn's office sent to party members on 11 June that claimed "over 15,000 people…have joined Labour since polling day."

Join our new commenting forum

Join thought-provoking conversations, follow other Independent readers and see their replies

View comments