Ex-po­lice­man in bid to be the next leader of Ukip

Can­di­date stood to be Kent po­lice tsar

Kentish Express Ashford & District - - Points Of View -

A Kent politi­cian has con­firmed he will stand in the bat­tle to be­come the next leader of Ukip.

Henry Bolton, who was the party’s can­di­date in the elec­tion for the role of Kent po­lice and crime com­mis­sioner in 2016, has an­nounced he will join the race to suc­ceed Paul Nut­tall.

Mr Bolton, who is based in Folke­stone, is a for­mer po­lice of­fi­cer and Army in­tel­li­gence of­fi­cer who has worked in in­ter­na­tional se­cu­rity in sev­eral dif­fer­ent coun­tries.

He was awarded the OBE for ser­vices to in­ter­na­tional se­cu­rity in 2013.

Mr Bolton is re­garded as hav­ing fought a well-or­gan­ised cam­paign in the crime com­mis­sioner elec­tion last year when he ran the Con­ser­va­tives close.

But de­spite ap­proaches from a num­ber of con­stituen­cies – in­clud­ing some in Kent – he chose not to stand in the gen­eral elec­tion.

It is un­der­stood his can­di­dacy has the back­ing of sev­eral se­nior key fig­ures in the party who see him as hav­ing the skills needed to pull the party to­gether af­ter it saw its sup­port plummet in the June poll.

Mr Bolton, 53, said he was look­ing care­fully at the or­gan­i­sa­tion of the party and its con­sti­tu­tion so that if he stood “I know what I am get­ting into”.

He said the party needed to es­tab­lish a broader do­mes­tic pol­icy plat­form to widen its ap­peal and had to tackle the is­sue of a right-wing in­sur­gency in the party.

“Af­ter the ref­er­en­dum and get­ting the vote – which had united us – there was no other vi­sion,” he said.

“I think there is a space in Bri­tish pol­i­tics for a party which is not part of the left or right spec­trum.”

He pointed to the suc­cess of Em­manuel Macron in France to show that tra­di­tional po­lit­i­cal di­vi­sions were no longer valid.

A lead­ing ex­pert on in­ter­na­tional po­lice re­form and bor­der con­trols, he was a po­lice of­fi­cer for Thames Val­ley force for eight years, dur­ing which he re­ceived an award for out­stand­ing brav­ery. Mr Bolton is mar­ried with three young chil­dren.

‘I think there is a space in Bri­tish pol­i­tics for a party which is not part of the left or right spec­trum’

Pic­ture: Tony Flash­man FM4328408

Henry Bolton is stand­ing to be­come the next Ukip leader

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