1. Peter Brown, former Conservative voter.
“I want my country back. Politicians have stolen my country and given it away. This country is now being run by career politicians who have no regard for the people who they’re supposed to serving.”
“That’s why I joined UKIP fourteen months ago. I voted for Cameron because he was the best of a bad bunch. But I didn’t like Cameron on sight, had exactly the same feeling as when I first saw Blair.”
“It’s nothing to do with racism, it’s just my country’s not the same country anymore. The main thing is the way it’s changed housing and doctors – I’ve got to wait three weeks to get to the doctor. There’s no control: the highest birthrate by far is from immigrants. We need births but not in the burst that we’ve had.”
“I like European people, I spent two-and-a-half years in Germany with the army. The EU is a plutocracy in the making and that’s not a tinfoil helmet thing: you’ve just got to look at how they’re flooding the market with cheap labour to make a compliant workforce.
“The EU project will fail, just as the USSR failed.”
2. Heidi Sinclaire, libertarian.
“I was born in Newark but lived in Geneva for a while before coming back to this area. I’ve been involved [in UKIP] for about three weeks. I joined a very short time ago, always had my eye on them. But the media pushed me in. All the nastiness and bullying in the media made me join.”
“I consider a libertarian so it’s the nearest we have to that in this country. Personally – not speaking for UKIP – I do want a flat tax. And we always assume that we can’t touch the NHS and that privatisation of any description is going to be a bad thing for it but I don’t believe that’s necessarily going to be the case.”
“I’ve always voted Tory. This is the first time I haven’t and I won’t again. They’re centrist. I can’t think of one policy on the right that’s actually happened in this coalition: the Liberal Democrats have had way too much sway and influence. It’s disappointing and I don’t think Cameron himself is of the right mindset for the Conservative party.”
3. Gary Evans, former Liberal Democrat voter.
“I lived in Spain running a business for years, which got into trouble when the economy collapsed. I returned home when I found the Spanish government would only give me three months of health cover.”
“I’m all for the free education side of things. The NHS [needs protecting] as well. But while there’s uncontrolled immigration there’s going to be nothing left. There’s no money as it is.”
“There’s no problem with immigration, just uncontrolled immigration. If we need people who are engineers, surgeons then we need them. But we don’t need 20 million unskilled people. Since Bulgaria and Romania have been able to get free access [to the EU], I’ve heard that people who’ve been back to Spain say that there’s a lot of problems with crime. That’s just something I’ve heard.”
“I’ve not looked into [UKIP’s tax policy] and am going to wait until they bring out the manifesto and then decide where I stand. But people who earn more should pay more.”
“The only problem I’ve ever had is with Labour. It’s insulting when they say we’re all fruitcakes, racists or fascists. Because we’re not, really. If I was to have found that when I went along to a meeting then I never would have gone this far.”
4. Peter Weston-Davies, former Conservative voter.
“I’m the chairman of the Newark branch of UKIP. I’ve been involved three years, we started the branch two years and now we have 150 members. All the major parties have suddenly started to move because of UKIP. You can’t put a fag paper between the main three parties.”
“The one policy that comes up again and again is immigration. We get brickbats thrown at us: you’re racist, you’re racist. We’re not racist at all. You just have to look at our candidates. But all we saw is that unfortunately the infrastructure of this country – schools, health, housing – is so overloaded. We want everyone’s who’s here to stay here. We don’t want to close the gates, just not allow totally unlimited immigration.”
“I’ve lived in Hong Kong and Europe. All my children’s godparents are Belgian or Dutch. I am very European-orientated. I love Europe, adore it.”
5. Dave Allam, first-time political campaigner.
“Six months ago I watched Nigel Farage on Question Time and I thought ‘these people are speaking my language, that sounds like me talking’. And I felt that I had a voice. And it prompted me to go 90 miles to go and hear Farage last week and drive 110 miles today to stand with this banner. I’ve never been involved in politics before.”
“I’ve bought cars in the past with a European flag on the numberplate and I’d ask them to change the numberplate or stick a St George’s Cross on it. Because it’s about control from Brussels: that lot at Westminster are like a county council.”
“The Prime Minister can’t control immigration and he’s the Prime Minister! I work for Ryanair, fly their aeroplanes and Bishop Stortford has changed beyond recognition. I used walk into the crew room and I wouldn’t hear English spoken.”
“I was in Tesco the other day and I kept hearing people saying ‘that’s why I’m voting UKIP’. These people were just average people buying their potatoes. I couldn’t believe how many were voting UKIP.”
6. Carl Maguire, opponent of Conservative modernisers.
“I’ve always been a Conservative but I didn’t like that Cameron said he was the heir to Blair, which was a smack in the face for me. And he talked about detoxifying the Conservative party – and I’m thinking, ‘what’s this about?’”
“I’ve only been ignited as an activist for the last five weeks. I decided that rather than rant at the TV and shout at the newspaper that I’d get out and try and help the party. My partner thinks I’m strange, being politically-orientated all of a sudden.”
“Normal people outside London don’t agree with the Westminster bubble. There’s never ever been a voice of reason or common sense for people like me. I’ve never been able to change anything and and then all of sudden I can help them out.”
“I love Europe, I go to Spain a lot. It’s just the EU, it’s gone too far.”
7. Jazmine Reeve, the student campaigner.
“I joined the party because my parents were in it. I’ve grown up with UKIP, I feel a strong part of it and I believe what we stand for is the right way to go.”
“There’s some people who aren’t going to like it but you’ve just got to smile and go through with. The immigration policy is one that I most like because I feel it’s going to help me when I need to buy a house and get a job.”
“It’s so I know there’s going to be a better future for everyone.”