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Last Updated: Tuesday, 22 May 2007, 12:15 GMT 13:15 UK
Labour tops political donations
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Donations were down by 800,000 from the final quarter of 2006
Labour received the most cash from donors in the first three months of this year, figures show.

Political donations as a whole were down 800,000 on the previous three months to 11.1m.

But the Electoral Commission said Labour had been given 4.97m, the Tories 3.74m and the Lib Dems 1.17m.

The next biggest figures were 495,663 for the Scottish National Party and 352,726 for the Co-operative Party, which is affiliated to Labour.

Total borrowing by all political parties fell by 22m to 38.7m between 1 January and 31 March.

Fine

The money was either paid off or converted into donations.

The Conservatives managed to reduce borrowing by 19.25m.

It would appear most of this came from the sale in February of their former headquarters in Smith Square and an adjacent Westminster property in Tufton Street, which allowed the party to repay its 15.65m mortgage.

The Tories also repaid 3.6m to Lanner Services Ltd, a company controlled by Lord Ashcroft, now in charge of the party's campaigns.

During the first three months of this year Labour cut its borrowing by 3.23m and the Lib Dems by 8,450.

Meanwhile, the UK Independence Party attracted 109,122 in donations, with the Socialist Party on 60,000 and Plaid Cymru on 55,591.

The Tories received 1.55m less than in the final quarter of 2006, while the amount given to the Lib Dems almost halved.

Labour received 2.33m more than in the previous quarter, following a 2m donation by Britain's richest man, steel magnate Lakshmi Mittal.

The Co-operative Party was fined 500 for submitting its returns five days late.


SEE ALSO
Tories' donations outstrip rivals
26 Feb 07 |  UK Politics
Party funding options published
19 Oct 06 |  UK Politics

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