Welcome aboard to Cllr Paul Irwin, who represents the Stone and Waddesdon Ward on Buckinghamshire County Council. He has left UKIP and joined the Conservatives.
Cllr Irwin is 42 years old married with two children aged 18 and 13. He is the Vice Chairman and captain of Waddesdon Cricket Club, and also manages Grendon Rangers Reserves Football Club.
He tells me:
“I have always been interested in politics and I have previously voted for Conservatives. However, I did not agree with the amount of power that Europe was taking and I was also against HS2.
“Firstly, I was introduced to UKIP in 2010 by my Uncle who is a member of UKIP. Shortly after I became a member of UKIP which led to becoming a branch member. Following on from this I ran for County Councillor in the Stone and Waddesdon area in 2012 where I was elected to Bucks County Council. Progress within the party continued as I was made branch chairman of Buckingham.
“Last year I started to have real concerns about UKIP’s policies. This is when I spoke to Chris Adams (UKIP South East organiser) and he persuaded me to stay, making me the Bucks Organiser. Six months went by and I was still not happy being involved with UKIP. I spent many hours thinking about what to do, I almost gave up politics as I did not want to be involved anymore.
“After many conversations with people like Cllr Mark Shaw and Cllr Angela Macpherson, I made the decision to do what my heart was telling me which was to join the Conservative Party. I am really looking forward to a new chapter in my life and working with my new colleagues.”
How many more UKIP councillors will follow his example as the General Election approaches and more of them contemplate whether they really want to help Ed Miliband enter Downing Street?