Conservative hits back at claims the party struggled to find enough candidates in Barking and Dagenham

Peter Harris outside Barking Town Hall. Photo: Arnaud Stephenson

Peter Harris outside Barking Town Hall. Photo: Arnaud Stephenson - Credit: photo: Arnaud Stephenson

A Conservative council candidate has hit back at claims his party struggled to find enough people to stand in the upcoming local elections and had to draft in activists to help secure enough nominations.

An article published on politics website Conservative Home by executive editor Mark Wallace claimed party members had to be drafted into Barking and Dagenham from outside the borough to hunt for people willing to stand for election and to secure enough nomination signatures before the deadline, which was today.

Candidates must secure 10 nominations from residents of the borough in which they intend to stand.

He wrote: “In Barking and Dagenham... activists and staffers have had to be drafted in in order to assist with getting candidates signed up and nomination signatures secured in time for the deadline.”

However Peter Harris, who is a candidate in the Eastbrook ward, said the party will be fielding candidates in every ward in Barking and Dagenham “for the first time ever”.

He says he has “no idea” where the story came from and the party had an excess of people wanting to stand for election.