Pirate Party UK
|Pirate Party UK
Welsh: Plaid Môr-leidr DU
|Leader||George Walkden (Interim Leader)|
|Founded||30 July 2009|
Direct democracy, Copyright and Patent Reform
|Political position||Radical Centre|
|European affiliation||European Pirate Party|
|European Parliament group||The Greens–European Free Alliance|
|Colours||Purple, Orange and Blue |
|Politics of the United Kingdom
The Pirate Party UK (often abbreviated PPUK; in Welsh: Plaid Môr-leidr DU) is a political party in the United Kingdom. The Pirate Party's core policies are to bring about reform to copyright and patent laws, support privacy and reduce surveillance from government and businesses, and guarantee genuine freedom of speech for everyone.
The Pirate Party UK contested its first election in 2010, standing 9 candidates in the 2010 General Election, and also stood in the 2011 Oldham East and Saddleworth and 2012 Manchester Central by-elections. The highest percentage of votes the party has achieved to date is 5.2% by Loz Kaye when standing in the Manchester Bradford Ward during the 2012 Local Elections. In parliamentary elections the party has generally received less than 1% of the vote. In 2009 they indicated they did not expect to be elected and that the party was only trying to raise awareness.
Laurence "Loz" Kaye was the Party Leader from September 2010 to May 2015, having succeeded Andrew Robinson, the only previous leader, after he stepped down. Kaye stepped down as Leader following the 2015 general election. Due to the role of Deputy Leader also being vacant, George Walkden, the party's Nominating Officer, was approved by the Board of Governors to serve as Interim Leader until the party elected a new Leader.
- 1 History
- 2 Principles
- 3 Core policies
- 4 Political objectives
- 5 Organisation
- 6 Membership
- 7 Elections
- 8 References
- 9 External links
Following the Pirate Bay Trial, a large surge in Pirate Party interest occurred around the world. After the success of the Swedish Pirate Party in the summer 2009 European Elections there was a sudden growth of Pirate Party organisations across Europe (notably in Germany and France) and beyond. Forum membership soared. The official formation of the Pirate Party in the UK followed shortly after the European Elections and the Pirate Party UK was officially registered on 30 July 2009.
In August, it was claimed that Pirate Party UK was undergoing rapid growth similar to one the Swedish Pirate Party had enjoyed in early 2009. It was reported that they had been flooded by enquiries and at its peak around 100 people an hour were signing up to become party members. Donations had been coming in so fast that PayPal was concerned they were a fraudulent site.
On 22 August 2009, one of the Party Officers, John McKeown, resigned from his post after he made a blog post that caused controversy and debate upon party policy. He felt that as he was elected prior to official formation of the party, when there were fewer members, he could not safely say he represented the majority view of the party.
In December 2009, the party voted to accept Peter Liddell as the new Party Treasurer, and John Barron was voted Nominating Officer, as well as ratifying several other positions within the party in November.
On 23 January 2010, the party opened voting to its members for the internal party elections for NEC members. It was announced on 1 February 2010 that the party members had voted to retain the current executive members.
On 30 March 2010, the party declared its intent to stand 10 candidates across England and Scotland, however to do so, further party funding would be required. On 27 April 2010, the party announced that it had nine official candidates on the ballot papers, as Mark Sims had missed the deadline due to the air travel disruption after the 2010 Eyjafjallajökull eruption.
Following the resignation of first party leader Andrew Robinson, composer and lecturer Laurence 'Loz' Kaye was elected as the new leader on 26 September 2010. In a message sent to members, Kaye stated his key aim as "building the political structure of the party". Previously, Kaye had been the Election Agent for candidate Tim Dobson who stood for Pirate Party UK in Manchester Gorton.
On 25 February 2015, the Pirate Party UK announced their withdrawal from their international affiliation, Pirate Party International. This announcement, consolidated by a vote of the Board, followed in the wake of Pirate Party Australia's decision to leave earlier in the same month.
The Pirate Party in the UK adopted a set of seven principles:
- Our society is built upon the sharing of knowledge, ideas and culture. It is furthered by freedom of thought and expression, and protected by the rule of law. The Pirate Party exists to ensure the preservation and development of these foundations.
- Human dignity is inviolable. Each of us has a right to life and to live, to freedom of thought and self-determination, and to participate in society.
- Everyone is equal under the law. We all have a say in the structure and processes of governance and the right to know what is done on our behalf.
- Respect for our private and family life by government and society is fundamental and we all have freedom of choice in our associations and relationships.
- To be free to participate in society everyone must have access to justice, education and such services and infrastructure required for life within it.
- To ensure the security of our society it is the responsibility of the government to provide for its defence, the mechanisms of justice and such services and infrastructure required to meet its needs.
- We will act on the basis of evidence, with the consent of society through democracy, in the interests of all.
During the initial formative weeks and months of the Pirate Party UK, there was a large number of individuals who visited the party's online forum and suggested additional policies such as changes to the UK electoral system, the legalisation of cannabis, and NHS reform. Subsequently the forum's structure was changed in order to demarcate more clearly the party's own values from the various additional suggestions that have been independently put forward by individuals. The party leadership has clarified on the official party blog that the Pirate Party UK intends to remain strictly focused on its three core policies:
- The reform of Copyright and Patent Laws
- The protection of our Right to Privacy
- The protection of our Right to Freedom of Speech
On 22 March 2010, the party announced their 2010 general election manifesto, which expanded on how the party intended to practically implement their core policies if elected.
In the run up to the 2015 General Election, a Manifesto all six candidates agreed upon based on the crowd sourced policies was created, which kept the core three principals as their focus but included a wide range of other issues.
It has previously been noted by Robinson, the first Pirate Party UK leader, that the Pirate Party UK's chances of getting a candidate elected to the UK parliament are "pretty much close to zero", due to the use of the First Past the Post system for electing MPs to Parliament. Instead, their immediate aim is to raise awareness amongst the voters and the politicians in the other political parties.
|2||Laurence "Loz" Kaye||2010-2015|
|3||George Walkden||2015||Interim Leader|
National Executive Committee Officers
|Nominating Officer||George Walkden||Interim Leader|
|Party Secretary||Ed Geraghty|
|Campaigns Manager||William Sizen Bell|
- Andrew Norton - Chairperson of the Board
- Andrew Robinson - Deputy Chairperson of the Board
- Will Tovey
- Stephen Ogden
- Phil Cooke
- Peter Brett
- Liam Dolman
- Jack Allnutt
- Harley Faggetter
- David Anthony Elston
- +2 vacant governor positions
Pirate Party Wales
Pirate Party Wales (Welsh: Plaid Môr-leidr Cymru) is a branch of the Pirate Party UK that covers the entirety of Wales and was founded in 2014. David Antony Elston, Pirate Spokesman for Wales and a Board Member of Pirate Party UK, founded the branch. Pirate Party Wales supports increased recognition of the Welsh language, including reform of the Welsh Language Act 1993 and free Welsh courses for all Welsh nationals. They also support further devolution to Wales and increased powers for the Welsh Assembly. The only candidate to have stood in Wales so far is Elston who stood in Bridgend in the 2015 general election.
General Election 2010
|Graeme Lambert||Bury North||131||0.3|
|Alexander van Terheyden||Bethnal Green and Bow||213||0.4|
|Tim Dobson||Manchester, Gorton||236||0.6|
|Luke Leighton||South West Surrey||94||0.2|
|Shaun Dyer||Leicester West||113||0.3|
|Finlay Archibald||Glasgow Central||120||0.4|
|David Geraghty||Derby North||170||0.4|
|Jack Nunn||Cities of London and Westminster||90||0.2|
Mark Sims intended to stand in East Ham but missed the deadline due to the air travel disruption after the 2010 Eyjafjallajökull eruption.
All their candidates lost their deposits, with their best performance being 0.62% in Manchester Gorton.
The Pirate Party fielded Loz Kaye at the Oldham East and Saddleworth by-election in 2011, after Labour's victory in the 2010 election was declared void by the courts, and the incumbent Phil Woolas was removed. The result was 96 votes (0.3%).
Scottish and Local Elections 2011
|West of Scotland||
Local Elections 2012
Pirate Party UK stood 6 candidates in 3 regions in the United Kingdom local elections. They received 551 votes, or 2.26% on average over the 6 wards they stood in, the best results for the party in an election. In the Manchester Bradford ward the party leader, Loz Kaye, received 5.2% of the vote, the highest the party has achieved in any election.
|Tim Dobson||Manchester Ancoats and Clayton||75||3|
|Loz Kaye||Manchester Bradford||127||5.2|
|Maria Aretoulaki||Manchester City Centre||57||3.1|
|Finlay Archibald||Glasgow Govan||51||0.2|
|Rob Harris||Glasgow Anderston||46||0.2|
|Phil Hunt||Edinburgh Meadows/Morningside||195||1.9|
Manchester Central By-Election (2012)
Loz Kaye was the PPUK's candidate in the Manchester Central by-election on 15 November 2012. He received 1.9% of the vote.
European Parliament Election 2014
The Pirate Party announced its intentions to stand candidates in the North West England (European Parliament constituency) for the European Parliament election, 2014 on the 28 March 2014. Three Pirate Party UK candidates were nominated, Maria Aretoulaki, George Walkden and Jack Allnutt.
The party received 8,957 votes, resulting in a 0.5% share in the North West England constituency.
General Election 2015
The party had 6 candidates in the 2015 General Election. All the Pirate Party UK candidates standing for election were endorsed by Something New as candidates to vote for in constituencies where they themselves were not standing candidates.
|Loz Kaye||Manchester Central||346||0.8|
|Sam Clark||Salford and Eccles||183||0.4|
|Cristian Chesha||Manchester Gorton||181||0.4|
|Andy Halsall ||Sheffield Central||113||0.3|
|David A Elston ||Bridgend||106||0.3|
- Barnett, Emma (2009-08-11). "Pirate Party UK now registered by the Electoral Commission". London: The Daily Telegraph. Retrieved 2009-08-12.
- "Search statement of accounts (published)". Electoral Commission. Retrieved 2015-03-25.
- "Register of political parties, Pirate Party UK". The Electoral Commission. Retrieved 2010-02-03.[dead link]
- "Pirate Party UK". Retrieved 2012-06-04.
- Turton, Stuart (2009-08-12). "Q&A: Why the UK needs the Pirate Party". PC Pro. Retrieved 2009-08-12.
- Turton, Stuart (12 August 2009). "Q&A: Why the UK needs the Pirate Party". PC Pro. Retrieved 2009-08-17.
- Scott, Katie (8 June 2009). "Pirate Party wins European Parliament seat". Wired UK. Retrieved 2009-08-17.
- McCormick, Andrew (8 June 2009). "Pirate Bay fans get voice on copyright issues". Revolution magazine (Brand Republic). Retrieved 2009-08-17.
- "Pirate Party launches UK poll bid". BBC News. 13 August 2009. Retrieved 2009-08-17.
- Harris, Mark (11 August 2009). "Pirate Party UK sets sail". TechRadar (Future plc). Retrieved 2009-08-17.
- Barnett, Emma (2009-08-13). "'Hundred people an hour' joining Pirate Party UK". London: Telegraph.co.uk. Retrieved 2009-08-13.
- "rancidpunk resigns". 22 August 2009.
- "'PPUK Announces Parliamentary Candidates'". Pirate Party UK.
- "'The Pirate Party UK, One Year On'". Pirate Party UK.
- "Loz Kaye elected leader of UK Pirate Party". Wired News.
- "Pirate Party Elects New Leader'". Pirate Party UK.
- "'A Message From the New Leader'". Pirate Party UK.
- "PPUK leaves PPI". Pirate Party UK. Retrieved 28 May 2015.
- Halsall, Andy (26 February 2015). "PPUK Bids Farewell to PPI". Pirate Times. Retrieved 28 May 2015.
- "Our Core Beliefs - Pirate Party UK". Pirateparty.org.uk. 2009-08-14. Retrieved 2010-05-23.
- "The Pirate Party UK Launches its 2010 Election Manifesto - Pirate Party UK". Pirateparty.org.uk. 2010-03-22. Retrieved 2010-05-23.
- "London - Pirate Party UK blog". pirateparty.org.uk. Retrieved 2014-11-10.
- "York - Pirate Party UK blog". pirateparty.org.uk. Retrieved 2014-11-10.
- "Manchester - Pirate Party UK blog". pirateparty.org.uk. Retrieved 2014-11-10.
- "Pirate Party Wales: We need to become a digital dragon". The Daily Wales. 7 January 2015. Retrieved 14 April 2015.
- "Bridgend Constituency". Pirate Party Wales. Retrieved 14 April 2015.
- "Everything starts somewhere". Pirate Party UK Blog. 2010-05-07. Retrieved 2010-05-07.
- "Pirate Party celebrates 1,340-vote election result". ITPro. 2010-05-07. Retrieved 2010-05-07.
- Election 2010, Worcester, BBC
- Election 2010, Bury North, BBC
- Election 2010, Bethnal Green & Bow, BBC
- Election 2010, Manchester Gorton, BBC
- Election 2010, Surrey South West, BBC
- Election 2010, Leicester West, BBC
- Election 2010, Glasgow Central, BBC
- Election 2010, Derby North, BBC
- Election 2010, Cities Of London & Westminster, BBC
- "Pirate Party UK Announces Parliamentary Candidates - Pirate Party UK". Pirateparty.org.uk. 2010-03-30. Retrieved 2010-05-23.
- "Voters go to the polls in Oldham by-election". BBC News. 13 January 2011.
- "Scottish election: Pirate Party UK profile". BBC News. 13 April 2011.
- "BBC News - Election 2011 - Scotland - West of Scotland". BBC News. Retrieved 6 May 2011.
- "BBC News - Election 2011 - Scotland - Glasgow". BBC News. Retrieved 6 May 2011.
- "Local election candidates announced". Bury News Online. 2010-04-04. Retrieved 2011-04-14.[dead link]
- Dalziel, Spencer (6 May 2011). "UK Pirate Party wins record votes in local English elections". The Inquirer. Retrieved 6 May 2011.
- "Pirate Party UK - Best ever result in a UK election". PPUK press release. 4 May 2012.
- "Best ever result for the Pirate Party in Scotland". PPUK press release. 4 May 2012.
- Elections 2012,Manchester Ancoats and Clayton, Manchester City Council
- Elections 2012,Manchester Bradford, Manchester City Council
- Elections 2012,Manchester City Centre, Manchester City Council
- Elections 2012,Glasgow Govan , Glassgow City Council
- Elections 2012,Glassgow Anderston , Glassgow City Council
- Elections 2012,Edinburgh Meadows/Morningside , Edinburgh City Council
- "Pirate Party to stand Euro Candidates in North West Region". Pirate Party UK. 2014-04-24. Retrieved 2014-05-04.
- "Statement of parties and individuals candidates nominated and notice of poll 2014". Stockport Council. Retrieved 2014-05-04.
- "Prospective EU Candidate: Maria Aretoulaki". Pirate Party UK. Retrieved 2014-05-04.
- "Prospective EU Candidate:George Walkden". Pirate Party UK. Retrieved 2014-05-04.
- "Prospective EU Candidate: Jack Allnutt". Pirate Party UK. Retrieved 2014-05-04.
- "Common European Election Programme". Pirate Party UK. Retrieved 2014-05-04.
- "EUROPEAN PIRATES: A COMMON PROGRAMME FOR EUROPEAN ELECTIONS". Pirate Times. Retrieved 2014-05-04.
- "North West England EU 2014 election results". northwestvotes. 2014-05-25. Retrieved 2014-05-26.
- "Candidates". Something New. Retrieved 14 April 2015.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Pirate Party UK.|
- Official Pirate Party of the United Kingdom website
- Official Pirate Party of the United Kingdom 2012 Manifesto
- Official Pirate Party of the United Kingdom 2015 "Fighting" Manifesto