MPs who this week broke away from their parties to sit as the Independent Group should ensure their followers are not confused with other councillors, the Local Government Association’s independent group has said.
The Independent Group of eight former Labour MPs and three former Tories has not announced plans to field candidates in May’s local elections, but supporters might stand on their own initiative
Marianne Overton, leader of the LGA independent group, said: “There are currently over 1,700 independent councillors listening and representing their communities, free to focus on the needs and aspirations of residents.
“Genuine independent politics is good for the country. It puts the issue, resident, community and country first, without the interference of party politics. What we do not want, however, is confusion at the ballot box.
“So, to anyone wanting to stand or vote for independents in the May elections, know that the newly established Independent Group is not yet a political party and it does not represent any independent councillors in England or Wales.”
Variations on the name ‘independent party’ have occasionally been used. There is a Canvey Island Independent Party in Castle Point BC and Ashfield Independents in Ashfield BC, while Pembrokeshire CC was before 2017 run by a party called Original Independents.