Brexit news: Charity boss loses job over ‘acid’ remarks, offers Farage apology
And Ruth Townsley has taken to social media to express her contrition in a post in which she said she had written to Mr Farage to offer a personal apology. The Brexit Party leader was covered in milkshake while campaigning in Newcastle, with Paul Crowther, 32, subsequently charged with common assault and criminal damage. Afterwards, a post from the account of Ruth Townsley@vintagecyclist said: “Bravo to Paul Crowther, good on you mate.
“Great that milkshakes have become a thing when it comes to the racists in our midst.
“I’d prefer acid but milkshakes will do for now I guess.”
The tweet was subsequently deleted.
However, it triggered an internal investigation at Bristol-based charity Happy City UK, which lists a woman called Ruth Townsley as a programme manager pushing “the health benefits of improvements in wellbeing”.
The charity confirmed yesterday Ms Townsley had been suspended, saying: “Happy City is aware that Ruth Townsley has previously posted tweets from her personal account including one about the Nigel Farage protest.
“We do not in any way agree with the contents of these tweets which contradicted all of our strongly held values.
“We believe all politicians have a right to have their voices heard, and condemn violence of any sort at any level of society.”
The statement was later amended with the words: “Ruth Townsley no longer works with Happy City.”
A tweet sent from the same @vintagecyclist account yesterday said: “I want to apologise unreservedly for my tweet yesterday.
“It was stupid, thoughtless and posted in a moment of frustration.
“I do not in any way advocate the use of acid on anyone at all ever.
“I have apologised personally in writing to Nigel Farage.”
Addressing the attack in an interview with the Press Association yesterday, Mr Farage said: “I just think we’ve reached a point where normal campaigning is becoming very difficult, and that in a democratic society cannot be a good thing.”
He said what happened to him was “part of something bigger that’s going on”.
“Civilised democracy only works if you’ve got the loser’s consent – you know, you lose the election, you don’t like it, but you accept it because that’s the system.
“Ever since 24 June 2016 we’ve had senior members of the British establishment – including two former prime ministers – literally refusing to accept the result, saying that those that voted Brexit didn’t know what they were voting for – they’re thick, they’re stupid, they’re lazy, they’re racist, they’re working class, they’re fat, they’re horrible.
“And that gives people on the other side of the argument a sense of moral superiority.
“And if you think you’re better than everybody else that then leads, I’m afraid, to a breakdown, not just in democracy, but in the civilisation that goes with it.
“And I think we’re in a very bad place with this.”