Aylesbury Vale councillor defends reposting far right politician's message on X

Councillor John Chilver retweeted a post from Paul Golding, the leader of the Britain First party
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An Aylesbury Vale-based councillor has defended his social media activity after he re-posted information from a far right political leader.

Councillor John Chilver retweeted a post from Paul Golding, the leader of the Britain First party.

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Golding had his Twitter account blocked in 2017, according to reports in The Independent, but both his and the political party’s accounts were reinstated last year after the social media company was bought by Elon Musk.

Councillor John ChilverCouncillor John Chilver
Councillor John Chilver

Councillor Chilver, who represents the Winslow ward in Bucks Council, has stated that his retweet was not an endorsement of Golding or his party, but he does follow the 42-year-old on the website, that was renamed X last year.

Councillor Chilver said: “In terms of this individual tweet, I agreed with its content which is why I shared it, but this does not mean I agree with the wider views of this individual or the political party he represents.”

In 2018, Golding was found guilty of religiously aggravated harassment, in relation to incidents in Kent where he was accused of targeting Muslim men. A court heard that Golding shouted "paedophile" and "foreigner" at an individual in a takeaway restaurant.

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The now-deleted tweetThe now-deleted tweet
The now-deleted tweet
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In a now-deleted post, Councillor Chilver, who is a cabinet member of Bucks Council, re-tweeted Golding’s post showing a Palestinian flag which had been raised outside Luton Town Hall as part of a fundraising campaign.

Councillor Chilver simply said “disgraceful” in his post, which also tagged Luton Council’s official X account.

On its official website, the political party denies that it is racist, stating that people from multiple ethnic backgrounds attend its rallies, and that Britons from all backgrounds are welcome to join its struggle to put British people first.

However in the past five years people affiliated with the group have been reported to the police for harassing asylum seekers who are staying in hotels in the UK.

In 2020, Golding was convicted of an offence under the Terrorism Act, after he refused to give the pincode for his mobile phone to police officers on his return from a political trip to Russia.