Wednesday, 12 March 2008

Fall from grace is no surprise

Richard Barnbrook and some members of his London campaign team celebrate the demise of Ken Livingstone's Race Relations Adviser

Lee Jasper's fall from grace last week didn't surprise me at all. I only met him the once but that was enough.

It was in May 2002 in Burnley after the BNP's historic success in the local council elections there. On the Friday morning after the count, Nick Griffin was giving an interview to BBC Radio 4 in the High Street when Lee Jasper arrived hotfoot from London. He started swearing at all and sundry about the British National Party and was warned by the Police about his conduct.

Later that morning he turned up at the Turf Moor Sports Hall where the recount was taking place which won the BNP its third seat on the council. Here he continued his appalling behaviour even offering the BNP chairman outside! He was warned by the Returning Officer, and then again by the Police before he was finally removed from the hall. Someone who can't control themselves in public is always doomed to fall foul of the authorities sooner or later.

I'm grateful to my colleague Wayne McDermott for alerting me to some important news from the Swindon Advertiser.

The newspaper reported that local councillor Owen Lister, who is a member of the UK Independence Party, had admitted that despite his membership, he would never dream of voting for the party.

The councillor for Abbey Meads ward told the Advertiser:
"When I joined UKIP I didn't look upon it is as joining a political party, but as a pressure group," he said. "I would never vote for UKIP in an election."
When a political party is in so much trouble that its members won't even vote for it, surely it's time to call it a day.

Doubled-edged sword at Borough Park last night. Spirited performance and thoroughly deserved 2-0 victory over high-flying Hyde United but the crowd was a desperate 241.

OK, it was a bitter night with gale force winds and there's not as much shelter at the Reds' ground as there was when they were still in the Football League back in 1977 - but that will provide little comfort for the cash-strapped club which needs gates of 600 just to pay the wage bill.

I'm hoping that the much-needed win and some better weather will boost the crowd on Saturday for the visit of another relegation threatened club, Hinckley United, in what is a real six-pointer.

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