Lord Pearson of Rannoch has been elected leader of UKIP. It should be interesting: as I reported last month, the new man has said he will make the fight against radical Islam a major focus for the party.

Today The Times reported: “A UKIP source said that if Lord Pearson or Mr Batten were elected “You are going to see quite a lot stronger position from us. Nigel has always been afraid of the Islam thing backfiring. But the BNP are taking ownership of issues that have not been addressed by Labour, the Conservatives or the Lib Dems and they need addressing.”

So I imagine UKIP will now probably make immigration and radical Islam as much their thing as Europe, and move closer to the Dutch Freedom Party, whose leader Geert Wilders is an ally of Pearson. It might not make them the darlings of White City, but it will play well to the public, many of whom are horrified about the direction the country is taking, and who want to physically puke every time they see a Westminster MP on television, but who are not prepared for the mental leap of voting for the BNP.