Financial accounts for smaller political parties published

Summary

Financial accounts of political parties and accounting units in the United Kingdom, with income and expenditure of £250,000 or less, have been published today by the Electoral Commission. The accounts are for the year ending 31 December 2019.

Louise Edwards, Director of Regulation, said:

“All political parties must keep financial records and submit annual statements of accounts to us. Publishing this data helps voters see political parties’ income and what they’re spending. This is an important part of delivering transparency in political finance in the UK, and in enhancing public confidence and trust in our democratic processes.”

Party income and expenditure

283 political parties in the United Kingdom reported their financial accounts as being within this threshold. 

12 parties reported income or expenditure between £50,000 and £250,000:
 

PartyIncomeExpenditure
The For Britain Movement (GB)£194,915£205,155
Communist Party of Britain (GB)£157,109£139,893
SDLP (Social Democratic & Labour Party) (NI)£145,835£139,082
Ashfield Independents (GB)£121,126£103,983
Advance Together (GB)£105,826£92,623
Green Party (NI)£92,962£93,640
British National Party (GB)£88,874£128,600
Socialist Party (NI)£85,606£83,492
Upminster and Cranham Residents Association£73,637£71,908
Conservative and Unionist Party (NI)£66,276£66,476
Traditional Unionist Voice - TUV (NI)£50,972£50,327
People Before Profit Alliance (NI)£49,116£50,506

The full financial accounts for each of the 283 political parties with income and expenditure of £250,000 or less are available on the Commission’s website

Accounting unit income and expenditure

Political parties may register 'accounting units’ with the Electoral Commission. These are constituent or affiliated units of a political party, including constituency parties, which have separate finances from the main party. 

586 accounting units in the UK reported income and expenditure between £25,000 and £250,000. In total, these accounting units reported £35,880,462 income and £33,347,811 expenditure.

31 accounting units reported an income or expenditure over £150,000. A further 53 reported income or expenditure between £100,000 and £150,000. 

The ten accounting units that reported the highest income and expenditure below £250,000:

PartyAccounting unitIncomeExpenditure
Labour PartyGreenwich and Woolwich CLP£249,696£248,418
Conservative and Unionist PartyRichmond Park£240,140£228,888
Conservative and Unionist PartyAylesbury£232,365£208,
Liberal DemocratsWestminster Borough£230,802£216,972
Liberal DemocratsHazel Grove£224,176£203,733
Democratic Unionist Party - D.U.P.Westminster Parliamentary Party - MP Grouping£212,479£221,678
Conservative and Unionist PartyRutland & Melton£209,356£108,106
Liberal DemocratsOxford West and Abingdon£207,172£171,808
Liberal DemocratsSheffield£206,146£200,866
Liberal DemocratsCambridge£203,908£221,913

The financial accounts for all accounting units published today are available on the Commission’s website.

Comparisons with previous years

Below are the total sums of the financial accounts for political parties and their accounting units that fell under the £250,000 threshold in the two previous financial years:

Political parties

 201720182019
Income£1,894,147£1,809,606£2,147,273
Expenditure£1,806,645£1,774,751£2,270,843

Accounting units

 201720182019
Income£33,235,366£21,591,161£35,893,352
Expenditure£30,533,621£21,204,528£33,473,161

Figures comparing the latest financial accounts for political parties and their accounting units with those for 2018 and 2017 provide a general comparison and do not necessarily compare the same parties and accounting units. The income and expenditure of parties and accounting units vary each year, so they may fall into different reporting thresholds.

Late submissions

Late submissions

Many parties have delivered their statement of accounts on time despite the current challenging circumstances caused by Covid-19. 

50 political parties that were expected to have income or expenditure under £250,000 have failed to submit their accounts. We recognise the impact that Covid-19 has had on some parties’ and accounting units’ ability to meet the reporting deadline. Where parties and accounting units have delivered their accounts late for reasons relating to the pandemic, we will take full account of this in considering what, if any, action is appropriate and proportionate.

Political parties and their accounting units with income or expenditure in 2019 of more than £250,000 had to submit their audited accounts by 7 July 2020. These will be published in due course.

Ends

For further information please contact the press office on 020 7271 0704 or email press@electoralcommission.org.uk. For outside office hours call 07789 920414.

Notes to editors

Notes to editors:
The Electoral Commission is the independent body which oversees elections and regulates political finance in the UK. We work to promote public confidence in the democratic process and ensure its integrity by:

  • enabling the delivery of free and fair elections and referendums, focusing on the needs of electors and addressing the changing environment to ensure every vote remains secure and accessible
  • regulating political finance – taking proactive steps to increase transparency, ensure compliance and pursue breaches
  • using our expertise to make and advocate for changes to our democracy, aiming to improve fairness, transparency and efficiency

The Commission was set up in 2000 and reports to the UK and Scottish Parliaments.

Accounting units with income and expenditure that are either £25,000 or less are not required to submit their accounts.

Financial accounts of political parties and their accounting units in Northern Ireland, with income and expenditure of £250,000 or less, have been published today. 

The fact that a statement of accounts has been placed on the Commission’s website should not be taken to indicate that the Electoral Commission has verified or validated it in any way.

Figures for income and expenditure have been rounded. Please see our online database for exact amounts.

Details of how failures to submit a statement of accounts by the deadline have been dealt with in the past can be found in our publication of closed cases.