Diane James sees off rivals to replace Nigel Farage as UKIP leader


Ukip deputy chairman Diane James has won the contest to replace Nigel Farage as the party's leader.

(Ben Birchall/PA)

The MEP, who was the frontrunner in the contest, took the top job with 8,451 votes.

During the leadership battle she promised to have a "laser focus" on the Brexit negotiations but refused to set out any policies, insisting she did not want to make "policy on the hoof".

Ms James secured nearly half the votes in the contest after going up against four other hopefuls.

Taking to the stage at the party's annual conference in Bournemouth, she said: "I still haven't quite come to grips with it.

(Ben Birchall/PA)

"I'm still pinching myself but I'm just immensely grateful for what you have done and what you have bestowed on me."

The new leader said the party had "moved mountains on the political landscape" and was the "change movement of the United Kingdom".