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Last Updated: Friday, 29 October, 2004, 11:14 GMT 12:14 UK
Joan Collins: I don't support UKIP
Joan Collins
Ms Collins became UKIP's patron earlier this year
Ex-soap queen Joan Collins said she is not a supporter of the UK Independence Party - she is just a patron.

The actress , who described herself as a "huge Thatcherite", threw her weight behind the party in the run-up to the European elections earlier this year.

But, in an interview with the Spectator, she clarified her position.

"I am not a supporter. I'm a patron [meaning] they put my name on the head of their paper but doesn't necessarily mean I'm going to vote that way."

Earlier this week Robert Kilroy-Silk resigned the UKIP whip after weeks of jockeying for the leadership.


Miss Collins revealed it was the ex-chatshow host who telephoned her last May to ask if she would be patron of the party - a call she said she found "extremely flattering".

At the time she said: "I do feel that my country - I am English - is losing a lot of what I grew up with. I feel we are eroding ourselves to Brussels."

Quizzed as to whether she was still a UKIP person today, Miss Collins responded: "What is a UKIP person?"

To the suggestion it meant a supporter of the party, Miss Collins replied: "I am not a supporter. I'm a patron.

"'Patron' means they put my name at the head of their paper. And it means I could be a supporter but it doesn't necessarily mean that I'm going to vote that way. I understand there have been some changes."


Miss Collins said that she was not particularly political and since backing UKIP she had "got to know a bit more" about their policies which she felt were "quite reasonable".

"This was four months ago and, to be quite frank, I have not been concentrating on British politics," she added.

"But you know what, I really don't want to get into politics."

She said: "I don't know why everyone is so fascinated with me and Ukip. I was always going on about how much I loved Maggie Thatcher. I don't remember that causing much of an outcry.

"I was a huge Thatcherite and nobody seemed to give a damn, so why all of a sudden this whole thing with UKIP? It doesn't make any sense to me."

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