A UKIP candidate fighting for a seat in today’s local elections will not be disciplined by the party despite making offensive comments about gay people on a blog – describing them as “prisoners who need freedom”.

John Kearney, who is standing for the Winklebury seat for Basingstoke and Deane Borough Council, made reference to gay marriage on his blog on March 29 this year – the first date which same-sex couples could marry.

In the post, he said: “Marriage for gays will gradually fall in numbers since it is against the promiscuous nature of that community.

“The Church of England will fall very soon and be conducting gay weddings and we will have the neo-Catholics in our church ‘giving us their compassionate views’, but the Church will stay strong despite their onslaught.

“We must pray for the gay community that they will see that they are indeed prisoners who need freedom.”

It has also emerged that Mr Kearney, of Western Way, South Ham, Basingstoke, made controversial comments last year about Islam on a blog which analyses Catholic doctrine.

In one post on August 22 last year, the 77-year-old said: “A new word has arisen in Brainwashed Britain – “Islamaphobia”. This is called an unnatural fear of Islam.

“I do not know about unnatural but I would say that anyone who does not fear Islam is a fool. No Islam is a religion and the Catholic Church with the Lord on her side is the only countermeasure. But Catholics must know their faith and they must be ready to die for it.”

When The Gazette’s political reporter Jessica Bave approached Mr Kearney and asked him to explain his comments, he said that he had been advised by the party not to speak to the press.

However, Mr Kearney’s election agent Phil Heath told The Gazette that he could not “defend” the Winklebury candidate over his comments on the gay community, saying: “He seems to have been misinformed that the majority of gays are promiscuous, which is completely wrong.

“They are no more promiscuous than heterosexual people. I think he has got it completely wrong, and I will ask where he got that from.”

However Mr Heath defended the comments Mr Kearney made about Islam, adding: “We back John Kearney 100 per cent. He is an articulate and very caring man who is devout in his religion.

“Everything in there (the blog) has been twisted into an attack on Islam. It is an analysis of Catholic doctrine. It is about faith on faith and it is a highly articulate website that analyses complicated people and ethics.

“He is not expressing personal views. He is taking it within the context of faith on faith and the problems that arise between faiths.”