A senior Ukip politician says the party hopes to take Hartlepool in the next General Election.
North East MEP Jonathan Arnott says he’s confident the party could gain more votes in the town before the next election.
He said: “We were only 3,000 votes away from taking Hartlepool at this General Election.
“Even at the count, Labour were very worried indeed when the votes started coming in because they didn’t realise how close we were.
“With Jeremy Corbyn as Labour leader now, he’s taken Labour a long way from ordinary people, and those people won’t vote for Conservative and Lib Dems, many of them will come across to us.
“I think we’ve got a very good chance of winning in Hartlepool.
“We’re going to have a big meeting in Hartlepool next month, but a lot of how we’ll get more voters is down to hard work.
“Sometimes politicians think they live in an ivory tower and don’t need to talk to people, but that’s not the case.
“Politicians don’t do simple things like going out and knocking on doors anymore, but how can you represent people if you don’t know what the issues affecting them are?”
Mr Arnott was speaking ahead of an event at the Sage Gateshead on Monday, where Ukip leader Nigel Farage will be discussing the reasons why the party believes Britain should so ‘no’ to the European Union in an upcoming referendum.
Mr Arnott will also be speaking.
He added: “In the last general election, we gained four million votes nationally and in the North East, got the highest vote share in the country – it was 17% across the whole of the North East.
“We did a lot better than we’ve ever done before in a General Election. Some of the Labour, Conservatives and Lid Dems are career politicians and have never done a real job in their lives and there’s a massive disconnect between them and the general public.”
Mr Arnott says that Ukip believes Britain would be able to trade more if it was outside the EU and that leaving would not see the loss of North East-based businesses like Nissan and Hitachi.