Norfolk

UKIP leader hits out at defecting Great Yarmouth councillors

Henry Bolton was attending a meeting of UKIP members in Great Yarmouth
Image caption Henry Bolton was attending a meeting of UKIP members in Great Yarmouth

The UKIP leader has accused councillors who switched to the Conservatives of talking "absolute tosh".

Henry Bolton visited Great Yarmouth a week after seven UKIP councillors defected, giving the Tories control of the council.

One of the movers, Kay Grey, said "many voters feel UKIP's job is done" following the referendum.

Conservative council leader Graham Plant said his was an "excellent party" and UKIP was finished.

"UKIP has done its job, now they are coming over to the Conservatives to make sure it's carried out," he added.

"We will ensure whatever the majority of people want carried out, we will carry out."

Mr Bolton, who who was attending a meeting of UKIP members in the town, described the defections as "political opportunism".

He said seven of the 12 UKIP councillors on Great Yarmouth Borough Council left because "they thought it was in their own best interests".

Image caption Council leader Graham Plant echoed the view of defector Kay Grey that UKIP no longer had a role

"The reasons they gave, which were that they felt the job was done and the Tories were the best party to take it forward, are absolute tosh," he said.

He said UKIP had a role in shaping Brexit and in giving a voice to "disenfranchised" communities.

Criticising the Conservative Party, he said: "The military integration with the European Union is being deepened but we have got a government that has got a mandate to take us out of the European Union.

"We are not out of the customs union, we are not out of the single market, and our courts and our parliament are still subordinate to a foreign power. It just doesn't add up."

Image copyright Google
Image caption Great Yarmouth Borough Council had been under no overall control before the defection

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