Suspended Wakefield Conservatives deny claims they campaigned against party at European elections

The Wakefield Conservatives suspended by their own party have been unmasked.

Thursday, 11th July 2019, 3:57 pm
Councillors Gill Cruise and Nick Farmer have both been suspended by the Conservative Party, pending investigations.

Councillors Gill Cruise and Nick Farmer are both being investigated by Conservative Central Office.

A third suspended member, originally thought to have been a fellow Wakefield councillor when the news broke last week, has now been revealed as local Tory activist, Tony Homewood.

All three are facing claims they campaigned against the Conservatives, on behalf of the Brexit Party during the recent European elections.

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The claims are linked to a visit by the Brexit Party's Nigel Farage to Wakefield, on May 20.

All three strongly deny the claims, which are understood to be linked to a visit by Nigel Farage to Wakefield in May.

The former UKIP leader arrived on an open top bus, hours after he had a milkshake thrown over him while in Newcastle.

But Coun Cruise, who was elected to her Horbury and South Ossett seat last year, said she'd been in the city centre on the day of the visit, but that claims she'd campaigned against a Tory candidate were "completely false".

She said: "I just wanted to see if Nigel Farage still had milkshake on his suit, and that was it. That's the God-honest truth.

The suspended trio are accused of campaigning against the Tories before the European elections, which they all deny.

"He didn't get off the bus, and then I walked away.

"I've never campaigned for anyone else other than a Conservative."

Coun Farmer, who represents Ossett, said: "It's all absolute garbage. I've never known anything like it.

"Some of the skullduggery that's going on in politics is absolutely obscene."

Coun Cruise said she wanted to see if Farage "still had milkshake on his suit". The Brexit Party leader had had the drink thrown over him in Newcastle just hours before he came to Wakefield.

Mr Homewood also dismissed the allegations as untrue.

A Conservative Party spokesman said: "Gill Cruise and Nick Farmer have been suspended from the party pending investigations."

It is not known exactly how long the investigations will take, but as the claims relate to an alleged breach of party rules, both can continue to practise as councillors.

Local Democracy Reporting Service