Wednesday 20 January 2016 12:07 pm

The General Election cost political parties more than £39m and the Tories spent £3m more than Labour in the most-expensive UK election ever


Lauren Fedor is the chief reporter at City A.M., covering politics, banking and financial regulation.

Lauren Fedor is the chief reporter at City A.M., covering politics, banking and financial regulation.

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Nearly £40m was spent on the 2015 General Election, with the Conservatives out-spending all other political parties, according to new data out today from the Electoral Commission.

A total of £39,023,564 was spent by 57 parties and 23 non-party campaigners in the run-up to last May's election, but the bulk of the spending came from the six largest parties: Conservatives, Labour, Liberal Democrats, Ukip, SNP and the Green Party. 

The six parties reported spending a combined £36.7m or 94 per cent of the total.

The total spend was nearly £5m more than the previous General Election in 2010. 

The Tories spent the most, shelling out £15.6m during the official pre-election period. Labour trailed, with £12.1m in recorded spending.

The four other parties spent a fraction of that, with the Lib Dems recording £3.5m, Ukip spending £2.9m, SNP shelling out £1.5m and the Greens spending just £1.1m.

But when it comes to running a cost-effective campaign, Ukip came out ahead. The BBC pointed out that Ukip spent just 73p per vote. The Greens were also relatively cost-effective, spending 98p per vote, while each vote cost the SNP £1.01.

Labour, meanwhile, spent £1.29 per vote and the Tories shelled out £1.38 per vote. The Liberal Democrats – who lost 49 seats in the General Election – ran the least cost-effective campaign, spending £1.46 per vote.

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