‘Your day will come,’ said Godfrey Bloom rather threateningly to David Cameron by way of ending his speech to the Ukip conference. Unfortunately for Bloom, his day came a lot sooner. Just a couple of hours later, in fact. Nigel Farage has announced that the Ukip whip has been removed from the outspoken MEP:

Party chair Steve Crowther told the conference this afternoon:

‘It is my role to make decisions and sometimes those are popular and sometimes those are unpopular, and I have to announce that we have just withdrawn the whip from Godfrey Bloom pending a disciplinary hearing. I will tell you why: Godfrey has had a couple of incidents today outside the hall here and elsewhere which are now conditioning the media coverage of this conference. So essentially we’ve done a lot of good work in this hall today, and we were driving an extraordinarily positive agenda within the media, up until lunchtime today and that has gone out of the window, I’m afraid. And I spent an hour-and-a-half sitting in the BBC studio this afternoon just answering one set of questions after another from all over the country about did Godfrey do today.

‘Now, that is a shame because it overshadows what we’re doing here. And so I have reluctantly taken the decision – this has been discussed with Godfrey and he accepts it – so we have withdrawn the whip from Godfrey this afternoon, pending a disciplinary hearing which will confirm that decision or not and decide how we go forward.’

As I blogged earlier, this was the only thing the party could do. If Nigel Farage wanted Ukip to be a club for odd people, then he would have let Bloom be. But he wanted today to be all about how grown up and sensible his party is these days. Now, as Farage himself said, it has ended up being all about an eccentric MEP making offensive comments and hitting a journalist.

Tags: Godfrey Bloom, UK politics, UKIP, Ukip conference 2013