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Former army officer elected Ukip leader

Former army officer elected Ukip leader

Nigel Farage may no longer be Ukip's leader but he still casts a long shadow over the party he hauled from the fringes to the political centrestage.

Paul Nuttall quit as UKIP leader after the general election, which saw UKIP's vote share shrink to 1.8% at the general election from 12.6% in 2015 - the year before the United Kingdom voted to leave the European Union. In the 2005 general election he stood as the Lib Dem candidate against future Conservative chancellor Philip Hammond in the Runnymede and Weybridge constituency.

He was endorsed by several Ukip MEPs and the former party leader Nigel Farage acted as his referee.

Phil Hornby spent the day on the English Riviera, and watched the build-up to an unexpected result. Ms Waters came second out of seven candidates, taking 21% of the vote.

On his personal website, Bolton says he will "resume Nigel Farage's legacy by restoring UKIP's relevance and authority".

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Paul Nuttall ran a disastrous leadership effort for eight months, after succeeding Diane James, who lasted just eighteen days in the role. In the event Marie Waters won, Nigel Farage had threatened to set up a new party.

Bolton, a former army and police officer, has been elected as the new leader of Ukip, beating off the challenge of Waters - known for her hard-line anti-Islam views - and Peter Whittle.

Under his leadership, the party will continue to position itself as a bulwark against a "soft" Brexit and to cry betrayal at any move away from a complete severing of connections with the European Union.

Speaking immediately after the announcement, Bolton said pressuring Theresa May's government into a hard Brexit will be UKIP's "core task" under his stewardship. Bolton reportedly said he was "fine" with the new design. "I abhor the rhetoric that we are at war with Islam".

The favourite to replace her, Steven Woolfe, pulled out following an altercation with a fellow MEP at the European Parliament that left him hospitalised. The party won no seats and just 1.8% of the national vote, down from the 12.6% of the vote it won in 2015.

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