Former charity chief to stand for Brexit Party at next election

Matthew Patten led the Mayor's Fund for London from 2012 to 2018 and was elected as a Brexit Party MEP in May

Matthew Patten
Matthew Patten

A former charity chief executive is standing for the Brexit Party at the next general election.

Matthew Patten, who was chief executive of the social mobility charity the Mayor’s Fund for London between 2012 and 2018 and who previously led the disability sports and youth cricket charity the Lord’s Taverners, was elected an MEP for the party at the European elections in May.

Patten, who will contest the Folkestone and Hythe constituency in Kent, is one of 150 prospective parliamentary candidates announced by the Brexit Party over the past few days.

The constituency, which is currently represented by the Conservative Damian Collins, has been a safe Tory seat since it was introduced in 1950.

Collins, who is chair of the House of Commons Digital, Culture, Media and Sport Committee, had a majority of more than 15,000 at the last election in 2017.

In a tweet announcing Patten’s candidature, the Brexit Party, which was formed only in April, said that more than 61 per cent of people in the constituency voted to leave the European Union in 2016.

Patten told Third Sector shortly after his election as an MEP that Brexit offered an opportunity for charitable organisations and they should view leaving the European Union as a chance to drive positive change.

No date has yet been set for the next general election.

Under the Fixed-term Parliaments Act 2011, the next one is not due until 2022, but many observers have speculated that the country could end up going to polls this autumn.

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