Children can't play in streets due to immigrants - Farage
Published 01/04/2015 | 02:30
UKIP leader Nigel Farage lit the fuse on what is likely to be an explosive political campaign yesterday by claiming that Britons are so ill at ease with levels of immigration in their towns that their children cannot play football with their neighbours in the streets.
The UK Independence Party leader said people in eastern England felt a "deep level of discomfort" about the millions of immigrants who have settled in the UK in the past decade.
Unveiling an election poster in the shadow of the white cliffs of Dover, Mr Farage said leaving Europe would cut net migration from 300,000 to just 30,000 a year by 2018.
Mr Farage said that by cutting migration levels, it would make communities feel happier with their neighbours, particularly in the east of England. He said: "I want to live in a community where our kids play football in the streets of an evening and live in a society that is at ease with itself. And I sense over the last decade or more we are not at ease.
"If we went to every town up eastern England and spoke to people about how they felt, their town, their city had changed in the last 15 years, there is a deep level of discomfort, because if you have immigration at these sorts of levels, integration doesn't happen."
Meanwhile, speaking in Scotland, Nicola Sturgeon, leader of the SNP said that Labour leader Ed Miliband could not lead a minority government which is supported by her party unless he agrees to abandon Britain's nuclear defence programme.
The Scottish first minister said that any "confidence and supply" arrangement could only proceed if Labour ruled out renewing Trident.
Labour has already ruled out a coalition with the SNP but not a confidence and supply arrangement, in which the SNP would agree to back Labour on the Budget and other key votes to support the Government.
Ms Sturgeon told the BBC: "We could have a less formal but still fairly formal agreement of confidence and supply. In those circumstances, we would need an agreement that the renewal of Trident wasn't proceeding.
"In terms of any formal arrangement with Labour, I can't make clearer, Trident is a red line."
Economic figures released yesterday will have given David Cameron's government a boost as it emerged that the British economy has grown at its fastest pace for nine years in 2014.
GDP figures showed the economy expanded by a stronger than expected 2.8pc last year, according to the Office for National Statistics. Quarterly expansion came in at 0.6pc in the last three months of 2014, leading to overall yearly growth reaching the same levels as before the financial crisis in 2006.
However, Mr Cameron slipped up earlier when he got his numbers mixed up when he claimed to have created 10,000 jobs a day during the last parliament. The figure - which slipped out during a live interview on Sky News's 'Sunrise' - would equate to more than 18 million jobs over the course of the coalition's five-year term in office. He was trying to voice his regular boast that employment has risen by 1.89 million under the coalition - around 1,000 a day since 2010 - as he set out plans to increase jobs by a further two million if he wins power when the May 7 elections are finally held. (© Daily Telegraph, London)