Borough Councillor Stephen West has defected from the Conservatives to UKIP, and will stand as their candidate for the new role of Police and Crime Commissioner for Hampshire and Isle of Wight, it has been confirmed.

The election to the post takes place in November.

Today Cllr West is in Birmingham for the annual UKIP Conference, where party leader Nigel Farage will invite Cllr West on stage to announce his candidacy.

Last night the Tadley Central ward member shocked Conservative colleagues on Basingstoke and Deane Borough Council by handing in his resignation, later saying that he had become increasingly “at odds” with his party of 12 years.