A Tory candidate in the forthcoming Warrington Borough Council Local Elections has apologised for tweeting support for far-right activist Tommy Robinson, which he says was a misjudgement.
Stephen Chadwick, who has been chosen to contest the Lymm North Seat, put out a tweet in May 2019 promoting Robinson’s campaign website, saying he had become a registered supporter, much to the dismay of a Lymm resident, who questioned whether the local Conservative Party was condoning far-right politics by selecting a supporter of Tommy Robinson, a far-right and anti-Islam activist who was the co-founder and former leader of the English Defence League.
Mr Chadwick said: “Everybody who knows me, knows that I do not share the views of far-right political groups. My post was a misjudgement on my part and one which I now regret and apologise for.”
“I am campaigning to improve road safety across the region after my son was involved in an accident and care passionately about such things as the green belt, education and mending potholes, issues which matter to me and my friends and neighbours.
“I am not a politician I am just someone who wants to do the right thing for their community, which is the reason why I am standing for the Conservatives in next month’s local elections.”
A spokesperson for Warrington Conservative Federation said: “Following his 11-year-old son’s accident by Rushgreen Road in Lymm, Stephen will be known to residents as a tireless campaigner for road safety in Warrington. Stephen made a misjudgement in terms of a social media post.
“This was two years ago and he has acknowledged his political naivety and, at the time, his lack of knowledge of the wider context of that post. Whilst we are disappointed that he did not raise this with us at the point of his selection, Stephen has been very clear that he does not support or condone the views of that post.
“There’s been a huge amount of mud-slinging in these elections recently, which is disappointing to witness. Warrington elects its councillors once every 4 years. The residents we are speaking with don’t want to dwell on who said what on social media years ago.
“They care about the real issues which matter at the moment to people living here – recovery from the pandemic, protecting the greenbelt, road safety, mending pot holes. Stephen will continue fighting for safer roads in Warrington so that residents young and old can cycle without fear.”
The twitter account under the name of @StavrosChadwick has since been deleted.