David Lovibond

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David Lovibond is a freelance journalist who regularly contributed to The Spectator magazine while Boris Johnson was the editor. His columns covered a variety of topics, including a scathing attack on the "demoralising and inherently absurd doctrine" of multiculturalism in Britain.[1]

BNP controversy

In 2003, the Wiltshire-based journalist wrote an article in the Spectator raising concerns that crime, in particular anti social and drug-related crime, had escalated in his local town of Devizes. The article coincided with a campaign by the BNP to form a BNP branch there. Its campaign involved sending leaflets about rising levels of crime, which were later condemned as being alarmist. According to the Wiltshire Times:

The British National Party has been condemned for distributing an "alarmist" leaflet to homes in Devizes. The leaflet states "Don't let Devizes become a crime blackspot" and adds "Crime destroys communities, time for zero tolerance!" and has been produced as the start of a campaign to form a BNP branch in Devizes. The leaflet was delivered to 1,000 homes in the town and comes a few weeks after an article in The Spectator magazine by Devizes-based journalist David Lovibond raised concerns that crime, in particular anti social and drug-related crime, had escalated in Devizes. The BNP said the delivery of the leaflets was not connected with Mr Lovibond's article and instead was part of its campaigning for the European elections in June 2004.

The Wiltshire police told the newspaper that the BNP's campaign was formed at a time when crime had actually gone down in the area. [2]

Locals reacted angrily to Lovibond's Spectator article, branding his "sensationalist" and "provocative" portrayal of their town as bearing "little resemblance to day to day life in Devizes" and "insulting". [3] [4]

Mystery over inclusion on BNP membership list

Five years later, when Wikileaks made public the BNP's membership list from 2006-2009,[5] Lovibond's name appeared on it as a 'gold' member and 'activist', alongside a payment received for £60.[6] A gold member, according to BNP's Nick Griffin "is someone wanting to go that extra mile"; membership costs £60 for 12 months.

Both the Observer and the Financial Times reported on the Spectator columnist's inclusion on the BNP list at the time.[7] [8]

David Lovibond however states now that he has "never been a a member or an activist of/for the BNP", although admits he has written articles and commentary sympathetic to its cause. In 2012, after having "written, emailed and telephoned the BNP many times asking them to do what they could to discover why my name appeared on the 2008 membership list" [9] Lovibond received a letter from the BNP's membership secretary Jen Matthys who wrote:

Mr Lovibond has brought it to our attention that he never signed up to be a member of the British National Party. We conducted an investigation and looking at the records, there was a cash sign-up with Mr Lovibond's details. Considering that the payment was made by cash, it appears someone has been trying to cause mischief. These cases sadly happen quite frequently, where disgruntled colleagues, family members or "friends" sign people up in order to cause trouble for their victims later. We hope this clears the matter up and we apologise for any inconvenience caused. [10]

Articles and comment


  1. David Lovibond, The real racists, The Spectator, 10-April-2004, Accessed 19-June-2009
  2. BNP faces flak over `alarmist' poll leaflet, The Wiltshire Times, 13-November-2003, Accessed 19-June-2009 (no longer online as of August 2012 but can be viewed at BNP faces flak over `alarmist\' poll leaflet in Devizies, Bristol Indymedia, posted 14 November 2003 accessed 11 August 2012
  3. Article has nothing to do with real life, This is Wiltshire.co.uk, 30 October 2003, accessed August 2012
  4. No love lost over betrayal, Gazette editorial, This is Wiltshire.co.uk, 30 October 2003, accessed August 2012
  5. BNP Membership List and BNP Members spreadsheet 2009 WIKILEAKS 2006-April 2009 British National Party (BNP) membership management information acc Dec 2012
  6. Gold Membership – Go That Extra Mile – a Message from Nick Griffin
  7. Oliver Marre, Mea culpa, mayor Boris?, The Observer, 23-November-2008, Accessed 19-June-2009
  8. Jim Pickard and Jimmy Burns, Probe into officer on BNP list, Financial Times, November 20, 2008 2:00 am
  9. Email to Powerbase managing editor, 27 Apr 2012
  10. Undated letter from British National Party on BNP letterhead, addressed "To whom it may concern", signed by Jen Matthys, posted to Powerbase editors from David Lovibond in June 2012