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Political parties’ latest donations and borrowing figures published

Published: 13 Aug 2014

Nine political parties registered in Great Britain reported accepting just under £15.5 million in donations between 1 April and 30 June 2014, according to new figures published by the Electoral Commission, the independent party funding watchdog.

Political parties reported £6,813,809 more in donations during the second quarter of this year than in the second quarter of 2013.

The five political parties to report the most in donations were:

  • Conservative Party – £7,185,709
  • Labour Party – £3,761,615
  • UK Independence Party (UKIP) - £1,403,716
  • Liberal Democrats – £1,230,834
  • Scottish National Party (SNP) – £1,144,400

In addition to these donations, during the second quarter of 2014, seven parties accepted £2,667,110 from public funds.

The value of loans to political parties as at 30 June 2014 stood at £14,461,581

A summary of donations reported in the second quarter of 2014, including the top donors, is available here:

Full details of donations and loans are available on our registers at:  https://pefonline.electoralcommission.org.uk/search/searchintro.aspx 

Full analysis and breakdown of the figures for quarter two 2014 is available at: www.electoralcommission.org.uk/find-information-by-subject/political-parties-campaigning-and-donations/donations-and-loans-to-political-parties/quarterly-donations-and-loans

Scottish independence referendum

Nine political parties (see Notes to Editors 8) are also registered as campaigners in the Scottish Independence referendum.  Registered campaigners at the referendum that are not political parties have to submit pre-poll reports to the Commission setting out what donations and loans they have received over £7,500 between 18 December 2013 and 5 September 2014.  You can see a press release on that most recent pre-poll report here

Political parties that are registered campaigners at the referendum are not required to do this. Instead, political parties report all their donations and loans over £7,500 to the central party, and over £1,500 to an accounting unit, in quarterly reports such as the one published today. They are not required to break down donations that relate to their referendum expenditure separately to their other donations.

Today’s quarterly donations report is therefore - for political parties that are also registered campaigners at the referendum -  the final report of their donations and loans that will appear before referendum polling day on 18 September 2014.  Their donations and loans received during the third quarter of 2014 (July – September) will be published in November 2014.


For further information contact Rosemary Davenport in the Electoral Commission press office on 020 7271 0714/out of office hours 07789 920 414 or press@electoralcommission.org.uk

Notes to editors

  1. The Electoral Commission is an independent body set up by the UK Parliament. Our aim is integrity and public confidence in the UK’s democratic process. We regulate party and election finance and set standards for well-run elections and are responsible for the conduct and regulations of referendums held under the Political Parties, Elections and Referendums Act (2000).
  2. The Political Parties, Elections and Referendums Act 2000 (PPERA) requires registered parties to report cash and non-cash donations and borrowing on a quarterly basis to the Electoral Commission. Political parties must report all donations and borrowing over £7,500 to the central party, or over £1,500 to an accounting unit, to the Electoral Commission. This includes aggregates of donations and loans from the same source. 
  3. As the parties only report donations and loans over these thresholds, the figures do not include all donations and loans to political parties. Donations and loans under these thresholds are recorded in political parties’ annual Statement of Accounts. To view these accounts, visit our register. 
  4. Public funds are donations from the House of Commons, the House of Lords, the Scottish Parliament and the Electoral Commission. ‘Short’ and ‘Cranborne’ grants are available to parties in opposition in the House of Commons or House of Lords respectively. 
  5. Some donations appear on the register as being from the Electoral Commission. These are Policy Development Grants, which were established by the Political Parties, Elections and Referendums Act 2000 for parties represented in the Commons by two or more sitting members. The grants are intended to assist parties in developing the policies that they will present in an election manifesto. The legislation provides the total sum of £2 million annually for this purpose. Policy Development Grants became reportable as donations for the first time in quarter three of 2006 as a result of the Electoral Administration Act 2006.
  6. There were 364 registered political parties in Great Britain at the end of the quarter. Seventy-four were required to submit their quarterly donation returns and 66 to submit borrowing information within the deadline. The remaining political parties were exempt because they have previously submitted four consecutive nil returns.
  7. The figures reported for quarterly donations and borrowing have been rounded to the nearest £. Exact figures are available on our website.
  8. The nine political parties who are also registered as campaigners are English Democrats, Labour Party, Liberal Democrats, Scottish Green Party, Scottish Jacobite party, Scottish National Party (SNP), Scottish Socialist Party, Conservative Party and Britannica.