Blog-artists across the political spectrum will be mining the “leaked” list of BNP members. Malcolm was in there like a ferret faced with a trouser-leg.
Among the list’s headline stars was the reverent gentleman of curious plasticity, who has already moved on:
Activist. Ex-Conservative and then Lib-Dem councillor, ex-chairman of local Green Party and UKIP member
Minister of Religion. Cert. Ed. Hobbies: steam railways
This character is easily identified as John Stanton, thanks to the Southend Echo:
A FORMER council chairman and church leader who joined the British National Party as a local organiser has dramatically turned his back on the far-right party.
The Rev John Stanton, who was Lib Dem chairman of Rochford District Council in 1997, admitted he was “stupid” for not knowing what the BNP really stood for when he signed up to the party about a year ago.
In yesterday’s Echo, Mr Stanton, 75, who was the BNP organiser for Rochford District, said he joined the party because he agreed with their positions on Europe and immigration.
But he has now said: “I have ended my involvement with the BNP after finding out more about them at the weekend.
“It was very stupid of me, but I only read what they said about themselves, which I agreed with.
“Friends have contacted me to say: Those people are nasty.’ My daughter rang me sobbing and said: What have you done?'”
Both Mr Stanton’s political and religious affiliations seem somewhat indeterminate. Again, from the Echo newspaper group:
Mr Stanton spent four years as a Lib Dem councillor in Rochford in the Nineties, having been a Tory councillor five years in the Seventies.
He said he saw no conflict between his Christian beliefs and his politics.
He said: “The BNP is very Christian-based and it gets very frustrated at the way Christianity is side-lined…”
He seems to have some passing connection with the local Methodists, but apparently his main outlet is:
an obscure house church named Rock Dene Christian Fellowship, which does not appear to have a website.
All in all, Mr Stanton seems of that solid timber from which English novelists have chiselled a sequence of grotesques. Chaucer would have recognised him. Dickens would use him as a template for another Chadband. He is often harmless, but self-harming. Rowan Atkinson would play him in the film adaptation.
There may be a clue in that preening “Cert Ed”. Stanton’s age suggests he could be one of those emergency two-year trained teachers who made possible the Butler Act of 1944. We know nothing of Stanton’s other education, if indeed he has a theological college background. Even then, divinity schools are not known for academic rigour: one more cynical than Malcolm might wonder how they could be, when there is just the single course text.
Enough of such frivolity!
That list is reeks with far more offensive odours.
There is Mr James W****** of Harrogate, who has elected to have the email address email@example.com. Ummm. Mr W****** may well share an interest in military history with
- Mr Chris M**, whose email is firstname.lastname@example.org
- Mark S****, whose hobbies embrace “WWII re-enactment, military buildings”
- Mr M***** who is listed as “HM Forces (3 tours N.I). Rho[d]esian Security Forces. Freelance security: Africa/South America/Europe. Hobbies: military history.”
- Mrs McC*****, the “retired hotel housekeeper” with her ” Certs in skin/nail care. Hobbies: sewing crafts, knitting, animal welfare, military history”
- Mr M**** of Worcester, a plumber and paint-sprayer, and hobbies of “shooting, wargaming, military history”
- the “Vera Lynn act” and her “military vehicles – owner of a WW2 jeep”
- the very busy Suffolk “Accounts assistant” and “Public speaker”, whose hobbies are “military history, martial arts, philosophy & economics.”
- the Mr Griffin (no relation) who is a “military/social historian”.
Another email address pregnant with meaning is that of Mr Karl Newman, an “activist” for the BNP, found at email@example.com. Of whom:
MIDLAND BNP candidate who likes to dress up as a German trooper to re-enact World War Two battles, has denied having any sympathy with Adolf Hitler or the Nazis.
Double glazing boss Karl Newman, aged 48, who is standing as a BNP candidate for Redditch in Thursday’s local elections, collects and sells Nazi memorabilia on his website.
“If I thought there was any link between the BNP and Nazis, I would resign tomorrow,” said Mr Newman.
That’s from the Birmingham Mail, who also have a very fetching photo.
Malcolm noted that, British and German military connotations apart, other forces were not popular — though the Northen Irish location for
is, at least, intriguing.
All 6131 email addresses listed are, in the short term, available on line (even though the main posting has been taken down). A number of other email addresses have militant tendencies:
Other Nordic types include:
- firstname.lastname@example.org (Mr David Watson is a member of the Manteca, California, cell of the BNP)
- Mr Slack, who is an active Odinist/member of Pagan organisations.
Or what about Mr David T*******, down there in the West Country, who was not renewing membership for 2007 because he was “unhappy with an Excalibur order”? Now, there’s some scope for explanation.
Then there’s the downright sinister: Clive Jefferson, “previously known as Clive Aitken, a man infamous in the Workington area“, who stood for the BNP in St John’s Ward, Workington, earlier this month. He is in the list with the contact of
and with the additional comment:
Activist. Gold badge mislaid: replacement sent 14/11/07
Convictions – monitor
Lancaster Unity have more on this one: look for the posting date of January 28, 2008. There is also a “Clive Aitken”, posting on sites such as the Telegraph.
Malcolm’s attention then fell on one other deserving name
Mr Sean Pearson is another small-time public figure, who stood for the Tories in Glyndon Ward, Greenwich 2006 (polling eighth of the nine candidates). He was formerly a chairman of the Swinton Circle, until he resigned in January 2007, to be replaced by one Alan Harvey. The heavy-lifting in this sub-topic has been done for us by Richard Bartholomew of barthsnotes, picking up from Hugh Muir in the Guardian diary:
Back with discomforting news about discord within the Swinton Circle, the group that inhabits the murky ground between the crazies on the far right and the outer reaches of David Cameron’s Conservative party. Many from the circle met recently in central London, the better to plot the demise of the EU and multiracial Britain. By all accounts, things didn’t go well. There was, it seems, a furore about the alleged infiltration of the meeting and of the group itself by NF/BNP types who only serve to lower the tone.
Bartholomew makes the link between the BNP infiltrators, the Swinton Circle and the Springbok Club, via that same Alan Harvey. Then comes this:
Harvey’s main antagonists are Gregory Lauder-Frost and Mike Keith-Smith of the Conservative Democratic Alliance; the current spat flared up when Harvey objected to Lauder-Frost’s presence at a Swinton Circle meeting.
A quick segue to the BNP membership list throws up:
Mr Gregory Lauder-Frost of 58 Coleshill Flats, Pimlico Road, London, SW1W 8LL
who was previously number 7821 (03).
Now, let’s be serious here: the Springbok Club objects to the BNP, while the BNP is in bed with the Conservative Democratic Alliance, the “authentic voice of conservatism”?
For sheer venom, this little nexus deserves rankings alongside any Trottery.This from a poster (“John Bolton”, no less) to the CDA chat-room:
Gregory Lauder-Frost was campaigning with the Monday Club to support European rule in South Africa for as long as I can remember. His credentials as a right-wing Tory have never been in doubt, have they?
What do we know about Harvey? Here are things that I have picked up from the various forums: he is badly dressed and smells; he was a former member of the National Front; he behaves badly in meetings; he refuses to have anything to do with those whodisagree with him; he picks fights with people; he is pompous and arrogant; he spins yarns; he has apparently recently been a ‘feeder’ for the Communist “Searchlight” anti-fascist group (who seem happy to overlook Harvey’s own fascist past) and so is a traitor to anyone remotely right-wing.
Oooh! Ethel! (that clipping appears under the heading Transvestite at Swinton Circle meeting! , a thread which has now attracted well over 400 contributions).