Updated: Wednesday, 21st February 2018 @ 3:49pm

'Untenable' - Bolton UKIP chief says party leader Henry Bolton must resign

'Untenable' - Bolton UKIP chief says party leader Henry Bolton must resign

| By Dan Taylor

Henry Bolton must resign as UKIP leader, according to one of the party’s top Greater Manchester councillors.

Cllr Sean Hornby, the leader of the UKIP group on Bolton Council, called for Mr Bolton to step down, saying the party chief’s position was ‘untenable’.

Mr Bolton refused to resign when it was revealed that his girlfriend Jo Marney had sent racist texts about Meghan Markle - even after the party’s national executive committee unanimously backed a no confidence vote against him.

A slew of party spokesmen have resigned in response to Mr Bolton’s refusal to go - but Mr Hornby ruled out any of Bolton's four UKIP councillors following them.

He said: “I think Henry should do the decent thing and step down. His position is untenable. He has to resign.

“If he can’t command the national executive committee's support then how the hell can he govern?

“The longer he stays, the more damage he does to the party.”

Mr Hornby added that he was confident UKIP would continue to do well in Bolton even though Mr Bolton was harming the party nationally.

He said: “There is still a positive feeling on the street of support.

“We can survive and will strive forward. UKIP has a future beyond Brexit, it just has to get the message across.”

 Mr Bolton hit back at the party’s ruling body in a press conference outside his Folkestone home yesterday, vowing to ‘drain the swamp’ of those who were against him.

"It is now time to put an end to the factional infighting within the party and to remove those who have been a part of that,” he said.

His fate is now in the hands of UKIP’s members, who will vote at an emergency general meeting next month.