UKIP leader Paul Nuttall and former leader Nigel Farage today visited Hanley to throw their weight behind Mr Nuttall’s campaign to become Stoke-on-Trent Central’s new MP.
The duo visited local café Harley’s bar before greeting the public at UKIP’s headquarters.
Mr Farage claimed the Labour Party has a lack of direction, and that Mr Nuttall can bring change that is needed to the city.
Mr Farage said: “I think part of this is a feeling that one particular party might have represented Stoke about 100 years ago and it is time for a different look and a different voice.
“I think it’s probably time for change but there’s a bigger message about what Labour are – where is the Labour Party, where does it stand, where is it on a lot of issues?
“There are two very distinct different Labour parties, whereas UKIP is more united, and you know exactly where Paul stands on these issues, as he has done for years.
“Paul is a hard-working guy, he certainly gets noticed, and if you get an MP who happens to be leader of Stoke, Stoke will get noticed more than before.
Commenting on the investigation into whether Mr Nuttall committed electoral fraud, by not having moved into his registered address in Oxford Street, Mr Farage added: “Oh please – what a load of nonsense.
“He has moved to Stoke-on-Trent, that’s the big message.
“He’s party leader – some of his stuff went ahead of him, if you understand what I’m saying.
“I think there are some big issues that were discussed in that referendum that the people of Stoke gave their verdict on overwhelmingly.
“And you could say we won the war but we need to make sure those things actually happen.
“A strong UKIP voice in the House of Commons – they will all be looking over their shoulders thinking ‘Gosh, we better get the job done properly.’”
Mr Farage gave a UKIP win his vote of confidence, adding; “I think Paul has a very good chance, I am increasingly optimistic as the days go by.
One member of the public said: “He is a politician that tells the truth.”
The by-election for Stoke-on-Trent Central will be held on February 23.
The final list of the candidates is as follows:
Mohammed Akram – Independent
Dr Zulfiqar Ali – Liberal Democrat
Jack Brereton – Conservative
Adam Colclough – Green Party
Godfrey Davies – Christian Peoples Alliance
Barbara Fielding – Independent
David Furness – British National Party
Paul Nuttall – UKIP
Gareth Snell – Labour
The Flying Brick – Monster Raving Loony Party
Picture by Richard Holmes