THE British National Party has said it can offer a voice to voters and that it is not a racist party but a realist party.

Speaking at the Wokingham Borough Council election count held on Friday Andrew McBride from Bracknell, south east regional organiser for the BNP said: "Nationally the party is doing very well and we have eight clear seats.

"We are not a racist party, colour or religion is not important to us, but we feel that British people are not getting enough access to housing and jobs.

"We would like to give people in Wokingham a chance to vote for us. If we get anywhere near 10% of the vote today we will be happy." But candidate Mark Burke who stood in Wescott Ward got much less than that. He only had 44 votes despite the resurgence for the party nationwide, and said he was disappointed.

He said: "The result was worse than I was expecting, but I was up against a long-standing Tory candidate, and did not have as much time to campaign as I would have liked.

"But this is the first time I have stood for the BNP in Wokingham, and I think it's always better to stand than not to stand. Voters must be given a choice." Last year Mr Burke stood in Norreys ward for the Putting Local People First party and gained more than twice as many votes, securing 98 which was around 5% of the electorate.

Mr Burke says he is already working for the benefit of people in Wokingham and has been working with the parish council on issues such as stopping houses being built on Greenfield sites.

The winner of Wescott ward was Bob Wyatt with a total of 929 votes out of a possible 1,552. Mr Wyatt has been a councillor for more than 20 years and will step down after this term in office.