Thurrock Independents

Thurrock Independents is a group of British politicians in Thurrock, Essex that was formed after its members broke away from the UK Independence Party (UKIP) in January 2018. The group had seventeen members, including former MEP Tim Aker (who remained in the UKIP group in the European Parliament), and formed the opposition group on Thurrock Council. The group was created after all seventeen members of the council's UKIP group left the party, saying they "had enough of the aggressive and bitter reality of party politics".

Thurrock Independents
LeaderLuke Spillman[1]
Founded26 January 2018
(official launch)
IdeologyLocal politics
Thurrock Council
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In 2018, the former party leadership defected to the Conservative party; and were followed soon after by two incumbent councillors who joined the Conservative Group in November 2018. Following losses in the 2018 local election, this left the party with just ten councillors.[2] As of 2021, the party is left with three councillors out of 49 in Thurrock Council.

Although Tim Aker joined his council colleagues in the new group, he subsequently stated that he would continue to represent UKIP in the European Parliament for the purposes of Brexit: "UKIP has a job to do in the European Parliament in seeing we get the Brexit we voted for. I will stay as a UKIP MEP. But to better represent my constituents in Aveley, I had no choice but to follow my colleagues and represent the Thurrock Independents." This situation led to some uncertainty about the status of some of the group's members as a number of them work for Aker.[3] Aker subsequently left UKIP and sat for Thurrock Independents in the European Parliament. However, Aker joined the Brexit Party in February 2019. He resigned his seat on the council having moved away from Thurrock;[4] the group lost the subsequent by-election.

During the 2019 United Kingdom local elections, Allen Mayes took the Tilbury Riverside ward of Thurrock from Labour.[5]


  1. "Breaking: All 17 UKIP councillors leave to form new party". Your Thurrock. 26 January 2018. Retrieved 27 January 2018.
  2. "Thurrock's 17 UKIP councillors all resign from party". BBC News. BBC. 26 January 2018. Retrieved 26 January 2018.
  3. "Tim Aker to remain a UKIP MEP and a member of the new Thurrock Independents". Your Thurrock. 26 January 2018. Retrieved 27 January 2018.
  4. "Previews: 21 Mar 2019". 20 March 2019. Retrieved 4 May 2019.
  5. Staff Reporter (2 May 2019). "Thurrock Elections 2019: Great night for the Independents at Thurrock Council elections". Retrieved 4 May 2019.