23/05/2017 11:23 BST

Tories Take More Than Twice As Much As Labour In Donations In Just Three Months

Theresa May's party accepted nearly £5.5 million in first quarter of 2017.

The Tories accepted more than twice as much as Labour in donations during the first three months of the year, new figures show.

The two main parties collected nearly £5.5 million and just over £2.6 million respectively from January 1 to March 31 2017.  

Labour’s biggest cash donations unsurprisingly came from trade unions Unite, USDAW and UNISON, while the Tories took more from individuals, with one - business Michael Davis, who previously contributed £30,000 to Theresa May’s leadership campaign - handing over £317,000.

PA Wire/PA Images
The Tories received a large donation from one of Theresa May's key financial supporters during her leadership bid.

The data, published regularly by the Electoral Commission, put the Conservatives’ donations total at £5,463,173 and Labour on £2,648,315.

The Lib Dems were way behind with £603,155, the Co-operative Party accepted £322,800 and UKIP were given £246,910.

In all, there were £1.6 million more in reported donations during the first three months of 2017 than in the fourth quarter of 2016, but around £2.5 million less compared to the same quarter in 2016.

In addition to the donations, five parties accepted a total of more than £2.7 million from public funds – money and assistance given to parliamentary opposition parties to help with costs.

PA Wire/PA Images
Len McCluskey, general secretary of Unite - one of Labour's biggest donors.

 The value of outstanding loans to political parties as at 31 March 2017 stood at £3,099,994 - a £1,982,996 drop compared to 31 December 2016

The Commission said 17 parties failed to meet the deadline for reporting their donations - a legal requirement - and that action would now be taken in line with its enforcement policy.

Bob Posner, director of political finance and regulation and legal counsel, said: “The reporting and publication of this data ensures that our political finance system is as transparent as possible and it is therefore always disappointing when there is a failure to meet the statutory deadline. Where there is no reasonable explanation for such a failure we will take a robust approach in dealing with this.”

The list of top donors is below:

Electoral Commisson