Cumbria

UKIP candidate Jonathan Stanley quits over 'bullying'

A UKIP election candidate has resigned from the party over claims of racism and bullying.

Jonathan Stanley, a Scottish-based surgeon, was standing in Westmorland and Lonsdale.

His resignation comes as UKIP MEP Janice Atkinson faces accusations of a "serious financial nature" and Scunthorpe candidate Stephen Howd was suspended following an "incident".

UKIP said it was incredulous over Mr Stanley's claims.

Mr Stanley told The Westmorland Gazette: "I have given my full resignation to the party because of issues happening in Scotland, open racism and sanctimonious bullying within the party."

A UKIP spokesman said: "We are treating Mr Stanley's comments with the incredulity they deserve.

"Mr Stanley and the party have been drifting apart politically for sometime and his resignation comes as no surprise to us. However, we wish him all the best for the future."

In his resignation letter, seen by the BBC, Mr Stanley said UKIP needed to look "seriously into the soul of the party".

He said he was disappointed the party did not react to the Kirkup Report into the deaths of babies and a mother at a Cumbria hospital and said UKIP's attitude towards Scotland was "corrosive".

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