South Bucks District Councillor Matt Bezzant has announced that he has left the Conservative Party and intends to stand as an independent until the formation of the Change UK Party.

Announcing his decision on social media, the former chairman of the Beaconsfield Constituency Conservative Association said that “the ideological hard-right from the ERG (European Research Group) hold the reins of the party and moderates and progressives are no longer welcome.”

Mr Bezzant made this decision ahead of local and European elections, telling the Bucks Free Press that he could not campaign for the policies currently being enacted by the Conservative Party.

“The reason for doing it now was that with the elections coming up I could not as a matter of principle campaign for the Conservative Party knowing I did not agree with policies.

“Since Brexit, Theresa May has lost the reigns of her own party. Brexit has left no Parliamentary time for any other real issues affecting the most vulnerable in our society across the country.

“The party in Government is letting down the people that is supposed to protect.”