Arron Banks, the Brexit campaign’s biggest financial donor and former UKIP backer, is turning to the power of media to peddle his anti-establishment agenda with the launch of news site Westmonster.
Launched today (19 January), the news site is laden with salacious headlines supporting UKIP leader Nigel Farage and a hard Brexit, while joining Trump in branding Buzzfeed as ‘fake news’, and peddling an anti-Burka agenda. It's tone is reminiscient of the controversial rightwing site Breitbart.
Westmonster is co-owned by Michael Heaver, former press adviser to Nigel Farage, the BBC reveals. Banks and Heaver own an equal share of the website. The site will feature some original news and opinion-led pieces. It appears to be modelled on the same provocative media that helped propel Trump's presidential campaign.
The site will harness the social media reach of Leave.EU, which has nearly 800,000 followers on Facebook, to peddle its agenda. Banks bankrolled the Leave campaign with a reported £7.5m donation - the biggest donation in British political history.
The site launches just 24 hours before Donald Trump’s inauguration, by no coincidence. Banks, alongside Nigel Farage, met with Trump after the US election.
He later revealed plans to bring Donald Trump's “drain the swamp” political agenda to the UK, that would include the creation of a new political party taking in members of Ukip, Labour and the Conservatives.
Banks will be attending Trump’s inauguration on Friday alongside Farage.