‘Friends blank me in the street’: Meet UKIP’s young guns

We met some young UKIP candidates to find out if they’re anything like Nigel Farage


You know you were born in the 90s when:

• You trained Pokémon
• You chatted to Smarter Child on MSN
• You wore jelly shoes
• You had aliens that got pregnant if you put them in a fridge (supposedly)
• And you disagree with the European Union?

I wanted to find out more about the anti-EU party hitting the headlines, so I rang a bunch of 90s kids who are standing as UKIP candidates.

I was ready, bat in hand, to write a damning article on how the young’uns are just as bad as all the old racist, homophobic fascists we’ve seen in the media of late.

Unfortunately that wouldn’t be the case. These guys actually seemed to be okay.

Some of them even had their own quasi-homosexual feelings for Nigel Farage.

Is this the sort of populism they try to draw you in with, or do the media actually just give them a hard time?

You may have heard Nigel’s car-crash interview on LBC radio on Friday – in fact, ‘car-crash’ is putting it lightly. He looked like an ignorant racist who had lost control of his party and is just as ‘establishment’ as every other politician.

It was so bad, one of the UKIP Councillors I interviewed contacted me the next day saying he wanted to retract everything he said about Farage.

The guys I spoke to weren’t racist. They didn’t seem homophobic. And I’m pretty sure they aren’t fascists.

The only thing I can accuse them of is being scared. Scared of a globalising world that they can’t control. Scared of a higher rate of tax taking their money. Scared of being nobodies.

Sean Howlett

The Mirror once reported that Howlett said Essex has “a lot of Arabs” and “a lot of Afghans”. The rest of the article made him come across as an arrogant young man.

Admittedly it’s a bit of a crude comment to make, and possibly a worrying insight to potential racism, but if you take it at face value (and don’t get me wrong, I am not defending this man), Essex has a population of 1.72 million people, 10.2% of which are black or minority ethnic groups.

So, there might be a lot of Arabs or Afghans.

I wouldn’t know, I have the pleasure of not living in Essex.

How old are you?


What do you do for a living?

I am…well my official job title is an ‘associate’, but I work at an independent financial advisers.

Did you ever go to uni?

No, I left school at 16, then went to college to do A-levels.

What first attracted you to UKIP?

I first actually joined when I was 17, which was just before the General Election in 2010. Initially it was the European Union, I’ve always been Eurosceptic…as my views developed, the main thing that kept me going in UKIP was actually its taxation policy, having a flat tax.

Have you ever been abused for your political views?

Oh absolutely. My friendship group from secondary school, very few of them will acknowledge me in the streets any more. Mainly, I blame the inherent left-wing views that students have.

Whats the worst thing that’s ever happened?

I’ve heard of incidences where people have been assaulted, but it’s never happened to me personally. The worst thing I’ve had is being told to “fuck off”.

‘UKIP are fascists, racists, homophobes’ – what do you say to that?

Right, especially on the word “fascist”, I actually find it incredibly ironic and hypocritical, the majority of people that yell at us that we’re fascists, they actually display fascist tendencies themselves.

With regard to the racist tag, they’re basing that on a very few and extreme minority of people who have been outed in the party.

Homophobia, again, it’s a small minority of people. What you’ve got to realize is a lot of people over the age of 70 where born and brought up with that sort of view, and the majority of people who are saying those sort of things are of that sort of age. And I think you have got to accept that some people do have those views.

Are you a racist, homophobe or fascist?

Absolutely not.

Would you want those on the far right, or foreigners or homosexuals in your party?

Well I definitely don’t want the far right in the party. I have no issue with homosexuals at all. And with foreigners, you know, who cares, as long as you’re here legally, feel free to join our party.

What do you think of Nigel Farage?

I think he’s the best leader this party has ever had, he has really driven this party forward. I think he’s a fantastic guy.

Do you think you are going to win the European Parliamentary election?

I think that’s a given.

Bulgaria or Hungary?


Ketchup or Mayonnaise?


Boy George or George Michael?

George Michael

Ed Miliband or David Cameron?


Dayle Taylor

How old are you?


What do you do for a living?

I’ve got a job at McDonalds when I’m home from uni. And then I’m at Chester University studying Politics & Sociology.

What first attracted you to UKIP?

I started finding out that [the European Union] was very undemocratic, most of our laws are now made by people who we don’t elect. I started looking through political parties, and found out that UKIP was the only one that stood up for what I believed in.

Are most your friends like-minded?

Well, it depends, because we do have quite a big UKIP branch in Chester and a university branch – we have about 7 active members. But in terms of people on the same course as me, I feel as if I am the only one in my lectures who holds these views.

Have you ever got any abuse for it?

Yeah, I do. I get some stick in lectures, but it’s all banter really.

‘UKIP are fascists, racists, homophobes’ – what do you say to that?

People should focus on what UKIP is really about, rather than the small minority of people within UKIP who make silly or insensitive comments.

Do you personally hold any of those controversial views?

What views? I believe that the UK should be able to control its own borders, I don’t believe that’s controversial at all.

Would you want those on the far right, or foreigners or homosexuals in your party?

Well, you know, I mean, there’s nothing wrong homosexual, there’s nothing wrong with being foreign. But definitely not the far right.

Where do you stand on the issue of repatriation?

I don’t believe that we should at all encourage people, if they don’t want to, to go back to their indigenous land. I mean the UK’s very open to immigration, but we need to have  a sensible debate on this. I mean we have totally open borders to the European Union…

What about a conflict of cultures, Islam for example?

No not at all, I mean I work with Muslims at McDonald’s  and they’re just like you and me.

What do you think of Nigel Farage?

I think he’s a nice chap, likes a drink. He leads the party very well and he does a lot for the party. He’s probably the most important factor in how UKIP is so big at the moment.

What do you think about Nigel Farage and Jeremy Clarkson supposedly saying the word ‘nigger’?

Well, that’s the thing, he’s deeply regretted saying that word…that’s as far as it needs to go. I think it’s been blown out of proportion.

Do you think you’re going to win the European Parliamentary Election?

Yeah, I believe that UKIP will come 1st.

Word association: Pankhurst









Well, with that one, Oswald is one of the seats I think UKIP will win, so I’m going to say UKIP.

Bulgaria or Hungary?


Ketchup or Mayonnaise?


Boy George or George Michael?

George Michael

Ed Miliband or David Cameron?

I’ll go with David Cameron, he likes a drink.

Philip Howell

How old are you?


So I’m guessing you’re not a student anymore?

Never have been a university student. Set up my own business at 18. Professional creative designer.

What first attracted you to UKIP?

I joined in 2010. If I’m being quite honest, what drew me in was Nigel Farage’s speeches in the European Parliament.

Are most your friends like-minded?

No. My best friend is a former communist.

Have you ever got any abuse for it?

Hell of a lot of abuse. All the time. Frequently labelled a racist. I took my girlfriend to see Nigel Farage speaking in Dudley a few weeks ago, did a public meeting there, to have to take her through the protesters, chanting at us that we’re racists, chanting at us that we’re fascists, it was very unpleasant.

‘UKIP are fascists, racists, homophobes’ – what do you say to that?

I don’t feel the need to have to defend myself against accusations that are unfounded against me personally. And what I always say is this, UKIP has had racists, had homophobes in the party, and as soon as those views have been discovered, they have been expelled.

Would you want foreigners or homosexuals in your party?

Well we do, we have foreign-nationals as part of UKIP, we had foreign-nationals who stand as MEPs. We’ve got a homosexual, an openly gay man, who is our lead candidate in Scotland. And also, even though she has fallen out with the party now, and isn’t a name we should really mention, Nikki Sinclaire was the first ever transgender parliamentarian, and she was a UKIP MEP.

What about Islam?

Under Lord Malcolm Pearson, when he was leader, there was a lot of kind of anti-Islamic policies coming into UKIP…but now, no talk of it.

But in terms of Islamism, there is a concern, and not just a concern within UKIP, a concern across the political spectrum. It is something that is an ongoing threat to world peace.

I don’t think UKIP has anything against Islam at all. But when it comes to Islamic fanaticism, and extremism, obviously UKIP takes a stance against that, becuase it is anti-liberty, anti-Britain and as we can all agree, a real danger to world peace.

What do you think of Nigel Farage?

The man is exactly as you expect when you see him on the television. He speaks his mind, he loves liberty, he’s definitely a freedom lover. They’re trying to label him as being ‘establishment’, which is absolutely ridiculous, I mean he used to travel around the country for party events in a clapped-out old Volvo.

Do you think you’re going to win the European Parliamentary Election?

I hope so.

Bulgaria or Hungary?

Bulgaria, because of Stiliyan Petrov.

Ketchup or mayonnaise?


Boy George or George Michael?

George Michael, becuase he’s not a criminal.

Ed Miliband or David Cameron?

That is a stitch up for a UKIP, you cannot ask me that question. You know what? I’m going to say David Cameron.

Jack Duffin

How old are you?


You still a student?

Yes and no. At Brunel, just finished second year. Don’t know what I’m doing next year, I’m probably going to leave university, take a job or go on a gap year.

What first attracted you to UKIP?

The domestic policies really, education was a key one.

Are most of your mates like minded?

It’s not really a political university, Brunel.

Have you ever gotten abuse for your views?

A bit on Twitter, a few trolls.

‘UKIP are fascists, racists, homophobes’ – what do you say to that?

We’re the only party that has an immigration system that treats everyone the same. I don’t think it’s right that someone who lives outside the EU should have to jump through a million and one hoops, but if you’re born inside the EU then suddenly you are entitled to everything.

What about your Asian poster girl, Sanya-Jeet Thandi, who left the party a few days ago because your party has descended into “a form of racist populism”?

Amazing, in a week she’s on TV defending our immigration policy, and then the next week it’s racist. It’s complete and utter rubbish how in a week you can go from one end of the spectrum to the other. I don’t know what happened there.

Is UKIP more vulnerable to being influenced by racists or homophobes than the main parties?


So why does the media focus on you being racist or homophobic, but not the other parties?

Because we’re something new. They don’t like what they don’t know.

What do you think of Nigel Farage?

Fantastic. It’s great to have a leader, someone involved, who says it as it is. If you ask him a question he’ll answer it.

Doesn’t he just give off an anti-establishment persona, but in substance he’s just as establishment as the other leaders – just look at his economic background and the schools he went to?

Your background doesn’t have to define who you are, if we bought into that system then anyone who went to a state school can’t have a decent job. And that is what the top politicians want, and the media want, because generally they’ve all gone to Oxford and done PPE, they are the cream of the crop.

Do you think you’re going to win the European Parliamentary Election?


Word Association: Pankhurst



Harry Potter




I’m dyslexic


No idea

Bulgaria or Hungary?

Hungary, because I’m about to have dinner

Ketchup or Mayonnaise?


Boy George or George Michael?

George Michael

Ed Miliband or David Cameron?

That’s horrible. Because I like Wallace & Gromit, Ed Miliband.

Thomas Hoof

How old are you?


What do you do for a living?

I look after a modern data centre.

What first attracted you to UKIP?

What happened to me was, I started to pay more and more tax the more I earned. And I got to about 20 and I was like “where has all my money gone”. So I read through all the parties’ manifestos. I came across UKIP, and a flat rate of tax.

So is your political view selfish, because you want to save more money for yourself?

No not necessarily. But don’t get me wrong, who doesn’t want to be more wealthy?

Have you ever gotten abuse?

Out campaigning I’ve been called a Nazi.

Are you?

A Nazi? Absolutely not, my grandparents fought against them.

So you’re not a fascist, racist or homophobe either?

Not that I know of.

Why do you think the media makes you all look so fascist, racist and homophobic?

Many in the party thinks it’s a conspiracy, I just think it makes a good story.

What do you think of Nigel Farage?

He’s like a bloke you could drink in a pub with.

That’s something all in UKIP seem to say, but where’s the substance?

He’s very witty, very funny. If he wasn’t a politician he should be a comedian.

I met him once, asked him for a cigarette and he said no.

He left me with a bar bill once, at a conference, he said he’d get the round in, and I got stuck with it.


Sorry what?

When the European Election is over, do you think you’ll go back to just being a party full of nobodies and possible racists?

I don’t think we’ve ever been a party full of potential racists. I get the feeling of a one-man-band in the past, but we’ve got such good candidates coming through now.

Why do you always attack the EU?

You don’t have to be in political union to trade.

You see no benefits of political union?

There is a potential benefit, like bigger buying power.

It’s not all about buying power, what about free movement, no wars etc…

I have no issue with free movement of people, if it’s with economies that are similar with yours, France, Germany, Spain before the recession.

In terms of no wars, that’s ludicrous, the EU didn’t come to what it was today until 1972. There were no wars, apart from Yugoslavia, for 30 years. NATO is mostly there for peace in Europe.

What about political and economic reliance as a way to break down borders, and make the world/Europe less ‘us vs them’?

I can appreciate that argument, but the other side to that is civil ‘us vs. them’. The cultural difference, and the history, is so significant.

So there you have it. From the horse’s mouth. They promise they aren’t racists. Then again, last time I trusted a politician it went tits up (#FuckYouClegg).