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Placards, protests, and 'bribe' fears over Market chips - the Ukip battle bus rolls into Great Yarmouth

PUBLISHED: 12:23 08 May 2019 | UPDATED: 16:05 08 May 2019

Broadcaster Katie Hopkins and Ukip party leader Gerard Batten sample chips on Yarmouth Market as they hit the election trail Picture: Liz Coates

Broadcaster Katie Hopkins and Ukip party leader Gerard Batten sample chips on Yarmouth Market as they hit the election trail Picture: Liz Coates

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Ukip top brass tucked into chips in Great Yarmouth as they hit the campaign trail, but also faced a small group of protestors.

Katie Hopkins and the Ukip battlebus are greeted by placards and protest in Great Yarmouth Picture: Liz CoatesKatie Hopkins and the Ukip battlebus are greeted by placards and protest in Great Yarmouth Picture: Liz Coates

Ukip top brass tucked into chips in Great Yarmouth as they hit the campaign trail, but also faced a small group of protestors.

Party leader Gerard Batten and broadcaster Katie Hopkins were challenged by a group of around 12 people, some waving placards, on the doorstep of the party's office in Regent Street.

Karen Davis, Norwich City Council cabinet member for social inclusion, held a sign which said 'Rape is not a comedy genre' in reference to Ukip candidate Carl Benjamin's comment targeting Labour MP Jess Phillips.

She was joined by deputy Labour group leader at Norfolk County Council Emma Corlett whose placard asked 'Why can't you just be kind?'

Both women criticised a "Trump-like" attitude which dismissed rape threats as "banter".

Mike Smith-Clare, whose borough council ward includes the town centre, said Yarmouth had a history of being inclusive and welcoming people from all over, adding that Ukip's policies were a threat to the "safety and opportunities" of his constituents.

Mr Batten and Ms Hopkins were supported by Carrie Talbot, the borough's newly returned Ukip councillor who said it was "nice" to be able to welcome senior people to the town so soon after her election.

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After being pinned to the pavement outside the Ukip office the campaign party including East of England MEP Stuart Agnew headed to the town centre to mingle with shoppers.

With the weather at its worst the group, including a cameraman, took shelter in the covered market where they tucked into some of the town's famous chips and filmed themselves.

Chatting with passers-by they were told not to share the tasty snack with people they talked to - an instruction tagged by Ms Hopkins as "the madness of politics that turns people off."

Mr Batten said Great Yarmouth was the kind of place where, despite the weather, he would have expected a warm welcome.

Karen Davis, Norwich City Council cabinet member for social inclusion, and Labour group leader at Norfolk County Council Emma Corlett were among protestors greeting Ukip's battle bus in Great Yarmouth Picture: Liz CoatesKaren Davis, Norwich City Council cabinet member for social inclusion, and Labour group leader at Norfolk County Council Emma Corlett were among protestors greeting Ukip's battle bus in Great Yarmouth Picture: Liz Coates

The town voted by 72pc for Brexit and was once a Ukip stronghold.

He said: "It is a bit wet but it buoys me up when I speak to ordinary voters."

He added the party had been "crashed and intended to die" but that in the last 14 months he had turned it around and achieved "some very good results" in the local elections, including in Yarmouth.

Issues that came up on the streets included homeless people, Trident missiles, and the market revamp.

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