The Brexit Party has announced its candidate in the Peterborough by-election as a former Conservative businessman who has appeared on Channel 4’s The Secret Millionaire.
Mike Greene, 54, will stand for Nigel Farage’s new party in its first shot at a seat in Westminster.
The city’s by-election on June 6 will find a replacement for MP Fiona Onasanya who lost her seat through a recall petition after serving time in prison for lying about a speeding offence.
Ms Onasanya, who was elected as a Labour MP in 2017, said she will not stand in the by-election.
Mr Greene wrote on Twitter: “I am proud to be taking on the challenge of standing for the Brexit Party and rebuilding trust in democracy.”
George Galloway, who last week announced that he would be standing, has withdrawn from the contest after the Brexit Party named its candidate.
He said he had “tried to persuade” Mr Farage to support his candidacy to “emphasise the broad democratic alliance the campaign must be and balance the candidatures of Ms (Ann) Widdecombe and Ms (sister of William Rees-Mogg, Annunziata) Rees-Mogg”.
All candidates for the by-election have to be declared before 4pm on Thursday, which is the deadline for nominations.
Candidates announced so far include Lisa Forbes for Labour, Paul Bristow for the Conservatives, Beki Sellick for the Lib Dems, Joseph Wells for the Greens, John Whitby for Ukip, Patrick O’Flynn for the SDP and Alan ‘Howling Laud’ Hope for the Monster Raving Loony Party.
Renew, UKEUP and Change UK have indicated plans to field candidates.
The Conservatives lost Peterborough City Council to no overall control in last week’s local elections after three years in charge of the consistently marginal authority.
The Tories now hold 28 of 60 seats on the council.
Labour remain the second largest group on the council with 17 seats, followed by the Lib Dems with nine.