Jeremy Corbyn Is A Gift To Ukip, Says Nigel Farage

Jeremy Corbyn's decision to unambiguously commit Labour to supporting Britain's membership of the European Union is a "gift" to Ukip, Nigel Farage has said.

In his speech to Ukip's conference in Doncaster this afternoon, Farage also told his activists that his priority was now the EU referendum, not the party itself.

Farage attacked the new Labour's new leader, who had been a longtime eurosceptic, for having "capitulated" to his europhile shadow cabinet.

"For 40 years we have understood that Jeremy Corbyn, this man of great principle, that Jeremy Corbyn, having a been an avowed admirer of Tony Benn and Michael Foot, Jeremy Corbyn was opposed to Britain being a member of the EU because he believed it damaged us as a nation state democracy," he said.

But he said Corbyn had now abandoned that position "within a week" of becoming Labour leader "under pressure form his shadow cabinet and backbenchers".

Farage, who walked onto the stage to the sound of 'Final Countdown', by Europe, told his activists that "a whole new flank of the Labour vote" was now up for grabs.

The main focus of his speech was on the referendum itself, rather than Ukip's future electoral success within Britain.

"Whilst of course I want us to do well as a party and succeed in those elections, there is something that is dearer to my heart that party politics, even if its Ukip," he said.

"I want us to summon every resource of energy that we can find in our bodies and our minds. I want us to to dedicate ourselves wholly to winning that referendum and breaking the link with political union."

He added: "This is the moment to country before party. This is a once in a lifetime opportunity to get back the independence and self government of this nation. Our message is clear. We want our country back."

And he sounded an optimistic note. "We are on course to win the most historic and most important political victory in any of our lifetimes," he said.

Farage also made fun of David Cameron as the "piggy in the middle", a reference to allegations made by Lord Ashcroft, of the EU referendum debate.

The BBC reported this morning that Lynton Crosby, David Cameron's election strategist, rejected an offer to help one of the groups in the 'Out' campaign.