‘One Nation’ Leader Henry Bolton Surfaces on Fishing Trawler

Yesterday UKIP announced it won’t go bankrupt – contrary to predictions – after it raised £300,000 in donations to meet the costs of the Jane Collins lawsuit. The party also said a £175,000 legal bill had been met “by other means”. Nope, no idea either…

If upbeat new leader Gerard Batten is to be believed, UKIP’s roller coaster fortunes may once again be taking a turn for the better. The party says it has signed up 1,000 new members since Henry Bolton was ousted. Ambitious Batten wants to stand 740 candidates in May so that the party qualifies for a TV broadcast. Interm leader Batten is now expected to remain in place for at least a year rather than the 90 days mandated by the party’s rulebook. None of this answers the really important question. What’s Henry Bolton up to nowadays?

He’s on a skate fishing trawler off the Kent coast. In his first promo video since launching new one man party ‘One Nation’, Bolton is seen chatting to fishermen about EU regulations. The somewhat surreal video, posted on One Nation’s new YouTube channel (3 followers), includes staged shots of Bolton walking into a fishery, shaking hands and sitting on the trawler as workers throw fish back into the sea. There’s no sign of Jo Marney.

The logo needs some work…

Bolton and Marney in Car Crash Interview

Henry Bolton has said it was worth losing his job as UKIP leader over Jo Marney’s racist texts. During a car crash interview on ITV’s This Morning Philip Schofield said of the racist texter:

“You just don’t sound like a very nice person.”

Bolton today announced his resignation from UKIP, just days after he suggested he could stand again for the leadership after he was ousted in vote of the membership. Bye…

Bolton Sacked

Henry Bolton has been ousted as Ukip leader by party members. A vote today endorsed the no confidence decision of the NEC:
  • There were 1378 ballot papers
  • 11 were spoiled
  • 867 supported the motion of no confidence (63%)
  • 500 members backed Bolton (37%)

Gerard Batten was made interim leader. The party will now have its fourth leadership election since the EU referendum. Bolton became leader just 142 days ago.

Guido caught up with Bolton shortly after he learnt of his fate:
This afternoon’s EGM saw the bitter divisions in the party played out in front of an estimated 2000 Kippers who gathered at the ICC in Birmingham. Bolton accused an “enemy within” of working to undermine him by means of smear campaign. Party Secretary Paul Oakley told the room Bolton threatened legal action earlier this week in an effort to try to stop the EGM taking place. Sources said Bolton later reiterated that threat during the meeting and was booed. A particularly scathing speech from Steve Crowther tore into Bolton’s record as leader and accused him of lying on his CV. Kippers leaving the meeting told Guido that Bolton failed to address the Jo Marney scandal in his speech…

UKIP’s Last EGM Was So Bad Someone Died

Kippers and hacks decamp to Birmingham tomorrow for the crunch EGM that will determine Henry Bolton’s fate. Senior Kippers say Henry could yet triumph. There has been a move on to line up Gerard Batten as interim leader in anticipation that the membership will back the NEC’s no confidence vote. Guido hears more than 1,500 UKIP members are set to attend. Jo Marney is still suspended so can’t enter the meeting itself. But will she come to Brum with Bolton to provide moral support?

Worth casting your mind back to UKIP’s last extraordinary general meeting, held in January 2000. Nigel Farage’s book Fighting Bull contains a vivid description of its apocalyptic political carnage, recounting how the meeting was close to descending into violence. One party member had a fatal heart attack and was evacuated by paramedics. Nigel wrote:

“It was held at Westminster Central Hall on 22 January 2000. Some 900 members attended… The crowd roared and wept and shook fists and sheaves of papers. Every speaker was shouted down. I have never, before or since, attended a meeting so constantly close to eruption into violence. One member of the audience suffered a fatal heart attack.

“I too was by now close to tears. Everything for which I had fought and worked was being ripped apart by self-seeking factionalism and idiotic pride. The people now walking out, maybe forever, they mattered. The ordinary advocates of decency and freedom who had sacrificed a precious day off to come up here from Suffolk, Devon, Yorkshire they mattered, not the vainglorious morons up there squabbling for position and power.”

What could go wrong…

UKIP Chairman: “This Is Not A Coup”

A late night email dropped to UKIP members from Chairman Paul Oakden yesterday. It was signed off: “Interim Leader”. Had a bloodless coup taken place overnight?

A few minutes later Oakden followed up with a clarification email:

“To avoid any panic this is not a coup … I remain, for now, the Interim Chairman. There is no Interim Leader.”

“For now”…

Over the weekend Henry Bolton didn’t deny he’d been seen out again with Jo Marney since the last sighting. On LBC this morning he told Nick Ferrari he had been paid around £5,000 since becoming party leader, said it was LinkedIn’s fault he claimed he had a BA degree from Sandhurst. EGM on Saturday…

Henry Bolton: I Still Love Racist Jo

Asked if the relationship is still live, he replied “yeah”…

It Could Be You ‘Kipper

The UKIP EGM is in Birmingham on February 17, so the winner will have to collect their prize fast if they want dinner with Henry Bolton. Who should Guido take if he wins?

Bolton Wanderer Hoping For Derby Away Win

UKIP’s EGM – the hotly-anticipated event of the year for Her Majesty’s Press Corps – is likely to take place around the 17th of February in Derby, Guido understands. Although the location and date are subject to change, this is the current plan. It would work out favourably for Henry Bolton: Guido is told the majority of his remaining supporters in the membership are based in the midlands and north. Senior Kippers think this could make all the difference for Bolton and are saying there’s a real possibility he could win the vote and survive – providing, as Nigel Farage has repeatedly warned, no further pictures emerge of him with his definitely-not-still-girlfriend Jo Marney in the meantime. Can his opponents bus 400 people up to Derby to vote him out?

Bolton Doesn’t Deny He’s Still In a Relationship With Marney

He told the press he’d dumped her, then we caught him going home with her. Now he won’t tell Julia if he’s still going out with her. Henry’s going to have to be straight with Kippers if he has any hope of turning this around. (He doesn’t.)

UKIP Resignations Rolling Live Blog

Today

Energy spokesman Jonathan Bullock

Yesterday

Work and Pensions spokesman David Sprason

London spokesman Peter Whittle

Education spokesman David Kurten

Local government spokesman Tim Aker

Assistant deputy leader Mike Hookem

Trade spokesman William Dartmouth

Deputy leader Margot Parker

5 councillors in Hartlepool

Over the weekend

Immigration spokesman John Bickley

Brexit spokesman Gerard Batten

London controller Peter Harris

Last week

Culture spokesman David Meacock

MEP Jonathan Arnott

Bolton’s former press officer Susie Govett

Disabilities spokesman Star Anderton

Farage: I Don’t Support Bolton

Nigel tells the Today programme “it’s been an appalling few weeks” for UKIP and that Henry Bolton has shown “very bad judgment”. He reckons Guido’s story about Bolton dining with Jo Marney at the National Liberal Club and then taking the train home with her was the most damaging revelation against him. He says if the EGM vote was tomorrow Bolton would certainly lose and adds: “I’m not saying I support Henry Bolton”. He has a month to turn it around…

Henry Bolton: I’m Not Resigning

Henry Bolton is not resigning as UKIP leader. Here’s his statement:

“I advised the NEC during our meeting not to expose the Party to the financial and political cost of pursuing that course of action, including the political cost of possibly yet another leadership contest. 

“I urged the NEC instead to focus on the unity and cohesion of the Party and on the need to concentrate on such matters as the local government election campaign and the necessity of mobilising our efforts to ensure the government delivers true independence in all areas of government and administration when we leave the European Union.

“I respect the next steps in the constitutional process and will therefore not be resigning as Party leader. I repeat I shall not be resigning as Party leader.

“Instead, during the next four weeks I shall be calling for the coordination and mobilisation of all Leave campaigns, to ensure that the government delivers full independence from the European Union in all areas of government and administration and I shall be calling for the Party itself to mobilise to support this agenda. 

“This is the most pressing matter facing our country and I am determined not to allow the NEC to distract the Party away from participating forcefully in the Independence debate. Without reflecting at all on its individual members, the NEC, as presently constituted, is unfit for purpose and has severely handicapped the Party’s progress and political delivery for some years, as all recent UKIP leaders will attest. It has not only lost the confidence of me as the Party leader in its ability to act objectively as the Party’s governing body, it has also lost the confidence of a large proportion of the membership. 

“The NEC requires significant and urgent reform. To that end, again during the coming weeks, I shall be proposing a new Party constitution, with a newly constituted and reformed NEC. Likewise, it is now time to put an end to the factional in-fighting within the Party and to remove those who have been a part of that.”

The saga continues…

UKIP Members Set to Force Bolton Out If He Refuses to Go

The latest on the UKIP saga this morning: deputy leader Margot Parker has resigned in protest at Henry Bolton’s continued leadership, telling the BBC: “It would be quicker and cleaner if he came to the conclusion he could go sooner rather than later”. Immigration spokesman John Bickley and Brexit spokesman Gerard Batten have also quit – Guido is told there are more resignations to come today. So, what next?

If it becomes impossible for Bolton to appoint replacements, he may finally decide to fall on his sword. If he decides to tough it out Corbyn coup-style he faces an Extraordinary General Meeting within 28 days, where UKIP members will be invited to attend and vote to ratify the NEC’s no confidence vote. The full membership of the party will be invited and all members present get a vote – “It will be a total sh*t show”, says a UKIP source. If the NEC decision is ratified Bolton has to go, if the members back Bolton the entire NEC has to go. Wise party hands do not expect Bolton to survive if it comes to a vote. It’s a matter of time now…

Bolton Loses UKIP NEC No Confidence Vote – Unanimously

UKIP’s NEC has passed a motion of no confidence in troubled leader Henry Bolton. The vote was carried unanimously, with the exception of Bolton himself. He will now be under huge pressure to resign. Party members will decide whether or not to back the no confidence vote at a meeting which must take place within 28 days. Surely Bolton will walk before then…

Is UKIP Finally Finished?

MEPs resigning the whip, councillors going independent, membership despairing and disappearing – this weekend could be the end of UKIP. The UKIP NEC is meeting to decide the fate of their beleagured leader Henry Bolton. He is appearing on Peston for a potentially last interview as leader on Sunday…

UKIP have been counted out many times without being knocked-out. Is this the final count for the single issue party soon to be without an issue?

UKIP’s Walker Offered £30,000 ‘Bribe’ To Bolton for Party Chairmanship

A critic of embattled UKIP chief Henry Bolton offered the troubled leader half the party chairman’s salary*if he appointed him to the position, Guido can reveal. Embattled Bolton received former leadership candidate Walker’s offer in an exchange of messages last month. Walker said: “I’m happy to do this job and split the money with you… you need a wage and I want to support you” (Bolton is famously doing the leader’s job unwaged). Bolton replied: “that sounds like bribery”…

Walker withdrew from the UKIP leadership election last August after he was promised the chairmanship on Jane Collins’ ticket; they came second to last with 4.4% of the vote. Sources have blamed Walker for launching a campaign to undermine Bolton and the party both internally and in the media, which he denies. Walker is on a ‘task force’ dedicated to ousting Bolton, and suggested this week UKIP should be wound-up. Walker told Guido:

“I have always been supportive of Henry until the affair broke. Lying to the membership is a big deal and he should go. I completely deny working to undermine him. There is no organised coup.”

UKIP, always entertaining…

*Sources say the chairman is paid between £60,000 to £75,000.

Bolton: She Came Round But I Didn’t Sleep With Her

UKIP sources confirm Guido’s story: Henry Bolton and Jo Marney did go home together after their loved-up dinner last night. It is claimed Marney came back to the leader’s Fokestone flat only to collect her bags. So keen is Henry Bolton to prove this that he ran out to a local taxi firm this morning and took a picture of the taxi log detailing Marney’s cab back to Maidstone. Poor bloke, gets the girl all the way back home but no action…

Bolton’s Battles

Embattled Henry Bolton on his battles…

“I’m going nowhere. I have seen people die, I have seen people blown up, I have seen people shot. Even the Taliban doesn’t quite prepare you for UKIP, though.”

Bolton’s Night With ‘Ex’ Jo Marney Ends With Love Train Home

This is the moment embattled UKIP chief Henry Bolton pledged to stand by his racist texts storm ex during an intimate dinner at a posh gentlemen’s club. In pictures obtained by Guido, the pair are seen dining together last night; hours earlier Mr Bolton declared his continuing love for the 25-year-old model in a newspaper interview – despite having publicly dumped her this week. An eyewitness to the tête-à-tête said:

“They were holding hands and touching in a manner suggestive that they were very much still together. They drank at the bar, Henry was making his support for Jo very clear.”

On leaving, the pair were doorstepped. Mr Bolton claimed:

“She’s now going back to Maidstone and I’m now going back home.”

But Guido can reveal Mr Bolton was later seen with Jo on the platform at Folkestone West station, the town where the UKIP boss has a flat. Perhaps she missed her stop…

Last night Kippers were furious at the thought Mr Bolton could u-turn on his decision to end the relationship. A senior UKIP source told Guido:

“Henry Bolton has killed the party”

Sunday’s crunch UKIP NEC meeting just got even more interesting…

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Bolton Dumps Marney to Cling On To UKIP Leadership

Henry Bolton has broken-up with his 25-year-old blonde bombshell model girlfriend in order to try to cling on as UKIP leader. He announced the decision on the media round this morning after MEPs and party bosses hinted yesterday he should either end the relationship or stand down.[…] Read the rest

+ READ MORE +

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Quote of the Day

In response to the news that Emily Thornberry described the Lib Dems as “like the Taliban” over their new revoke Article 50 Brexit policy, the former Lib Dem leader responded:

“Come on Emily, if we really were like a Middle East terrorist group, don’t you think Jeremy would’ve invited us to a conference fringe meeting before now?”

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