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Green Party membership has doubled since January

Natalie Bennett appeared on Leaders Live last week. Credit: Max Nash/PA Archive

The Green Party has announced that its membership has doubled in the last 11 months.

The surge in support for the party - including an increase of around 500 this weekend following Natalie Bennett's appearance on BBC Radio 4's Any Questions - took it to 27,618 members this morning.

The party claims it is also polling at its highest levels ahead of a General Election since 1989, and says it is committing to stand in 75% of constituencies in May - a dramatic increase on 2010.

Bennett - who kicked off Bite the Ballot's Leaders Live season last week - described the growth a "real landmark" and said many of those joining are former Labour and Liberal Democrat members.


Green party leader looking forward to 'direct contact with voters'

Natalie Bennett, leader of the Green Party, has said she will value having direct contact with young voters when she kicks off the Leaders Live events on Wednesday 26th November.

It is great to have this chance to reach a wide range of voters who mightn't usually engage with traditional politics in newspapers or broadcast media, particularly younger voters.

I chose the issues that I hear, when I speak to groups of young people, are of most concern to them. I value this format because it is going to allow direct contact with voters. Streaming online has an immediacy and accessibility that's refreshing - great to reach people wherever they are.

– Natalie Bennett, green party


Green party leader predict 'big shifts' in British politics

British politics is heading for "big shifts" in the next few years as voters abandon mainstream parties in the search for "new answers", the leader of the Green Party in England and Wales said.

Natalie Bennett was speaking as activists gathered for their autumn conference in Brighton.

Green Party leader in England and Wales Natalie Bennett. Credit: Press Association

Ms Bennett rejected suggestions the rise of the UK Independence Party had sidelined the Greens from their former position as the fourth party in British politics, insisting it marked a general shift in politics away from traditional party loyalties.

Speaking to BBC Radio 4's Today programme, she said she had been told that in many cases voters were "talking about Ukip and Greens in the one breath".

"Obviously our policies are very different, but people are looking for new answers, and we are going to see big shifts in British politics in the next few years," she said.

"What we are seeing is very much a shift away from the three largest parties."

Lucas to quit as Green Party leader

Caroline Lucas MP who is standing down as leader of the Green Party. Credit: PA

Caroline Lucas is standing down as leader of the Green Party. Ms Lucas - who was elected as the party's first MP in 2010 - said she would step down in September at the end of her second, two-year term as leader.

"We're lucky to have a wealth of capability and experience in our party. Now feels like the right time to step aside, to allow more of that ability to come forward and help the party to grow," she said in a statement on the party's website.

Green Party celebrates progress in local elections

The Green party's ballot logo Credit: Green Party

The Green party is celebrating solid results in today's local elections. They saw an overall gain of 11 councillors, and the successful defence of all their seats in stronghold Norwich.

The party's leader and only MP Caroline Lucas said the results showed the Greens were "growing in confidence and steadily building support".

Jenny Jones, the Green party candidate for London mayor, is currently heading for third place.

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