Pictured during his National Front days: The man behind Ukip’s Nigel Farage ran group of far-right racists

  • Martyn Heale is current chairman of Nigel Farage’s party in Thanet South
  • He was head of a London branch of the racist National Front (NF) in 1978
  • Mr Heale claims it was just ‘a bit of a social club’ when he ran local group
  • He’s masterminding Mr Farage’s attempt to win the seat in the election
In the news: Martyn Heale in the 1970s with copies of an NF newspaper

In the news: Martyn Heale in the 1970s with copies of an NF newspaper

This is the Ukip official masterminding Nigel Farage’s campaign to become an MP – pictured in his days as a leading figure in the National Front.

Martyn Heale, current chairman of Mr Farage’s party in Thanet South, was head of a London branch of the racist organisation.

Mr Heale claims that the National Front (NF) – which supports the compulsory repatriation of all non-white immigrants – was just ‘a bit of a social club’ when he ran the local group in 1978.

But newspaper reports from the time, unearthed by The Mail on Sunday, paint a very different picture of the organisation.

One article, from the West London Observer, included a picture of Mr Heale alongside reports that the police were planning to ban a National Front march in April 1978 because the officers thought there was ‘bound to be violence’ when the protesters were confronted by anti-Nazi demonstrators.

Another article from the same publication gives a graphic account of how a 17-year-old boy was knifed to death at a party in Hammersmith, where Mr Heale was head of the local National Front branch.

The victim, a member of the NF, was killed by friends of a fellow member.

A cover of the group’s magazine Spearhead from March 1979 indicates the type of literature which it distributed at the time.

It shows a black man kissing a white woman, next to a headline which says: ‘Start Repatriation Now!’

Last year, Mr Heale told the London Review of Books: ‘There’s been an attempt by many people to associate the National Front with the far-Right. But that’s not fair, that’s not true.

‘It was a bit of a social club… initially the National Front was just a group of retired people and soldiers.’

After leaving the NF in 1979, Mr Heale spent 20 years as a Conservative Party activist before joining Ukip in Thanet South a decade ago.

Now: Mr Heale (circled), behind Mr Farage at a Ukip event, claims the National Front (NF) was just ‘a bit of a social club’ when he ran the local group in 1978

Now: Mr Heale (circled), behind Mr Farage at a Ukip event, claims the National Front (NF) was just ‘a bit of a social club’ when he ran the local group in 1978

Farage: There is a constant attempt to paint UKIP as racist

He is masterminding Mr Farage’s attempt to win the seat in Thursday’s General Election. According to the most recent polls, the Ukip leader is neck and neck with both the Conservative and Labour candidates.

If Mr Farage fails to win, his political career will be over as he has promised to resign as party leader.

The contest has proved to be extremely divisive in the Kent seat, with allegations of violence by far-Right activists who have rallied behind Mr Farage’s cause.

Regarding Mr Heale’s involvement in the National Front, a Ukip spokesman said: ‘This is something that happened over 30 years ago, and Mr Heale has addressed it a number of times. He was the chairman of Ramsgate Conservatives and was with the Conservatives for more than 20 years before coming to Ukip.’

The party added that Mr Heale had never organised a National Front march, and that he had left the organisation by the time the picture of the kissing couple appeared on its magazine cover.

Martyn Heale, current chairman of Mr Farage’s party in Thanet South, was head of a London branch of the National Front (NF) supports the compulsory repatriation of all non-white immigrants

Martyn Heale, current chairman of Mr Farage’s party in Thanet South, was head of a London branch of the National Front (NF) supports the compulsory repatriation of all non-white immigrants

Mr Farage’s party was also at the centre of allegations last night that – despite its opposition to immigration – it was using Polish and Ukrainian workers to distribute leaflets in the target seat of Castle Point in Essex.

A video seen by this newspaper shows a group of foreign students, who say they are from Ukraine, delivering leaflets which read: ‘Ukip supports an Australian-style, points based migration system to slash the volume of immigration and end the undercutting of the wages of British working people.’

In the video, one of the men says he is from the city of Dnipropetrovsk, adding: ‘I am student from Ukraine come to London work… I am studying in Ukraine.’

Tory Rebecca Harris, who hopes to be re-elected in Castle Point, said: ‘Ukip can’t be trusted to deliver on anything they say they will do – their hypocrisy knows no limit.

‘One minute they’re anti-immigration, the next they’re employing low-skilled migrants to hand out their leaflets.

‘One minute they want action, the next they’re helping Ed Miliband become Prime Minister. The only way to stop the chaos of Ed Miliband in Downing Street is to vote Conservative on Thursday.’

A Ukip spokesman said they had only ‘briefly’ used the leaflet distribution firm in question, adding: ‘It is our understanding that this is a reputable company.’

From The Daily Mail . Report by Glen Owen . 02.05.15

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