Ukip leader Nigel Farage has had to deal with a series of scandals in December
Ukip leader Nigel Farage has had to deal with a series of scandals in December Getty

Ukip party secretary Matthew Richardson, an Oxford graduate who previously worked as a barrister in the City of London, was initially hired to keep damaging stories about the party from surfacing in the media.

Richardson was selected to keep "bad stuff" from the public, according to the Daily Mirror, citing leaked minutes from the party's national executive meeting in June 2013.

"We need to ensure all of the bad stuff is kept out of the public domain," the minutes state, as quoted by the Mirror.

"As party secretary (Mr Richardson) would try to ensure that we keep a tight rein on things."

The leaks come at a difficult time for Nigel Farage's anti-European party, following a series of damaging incidents on social media and within the party's hierarchy.

For instance, William Henwood, a Ukip candidate in Enfield, tweeted that comic Lenny Henry should emigrate to a "black country" and does "not have to live with whites".

Kerry Smith, who was standing as parliamentary candidate, resigned after making offensive remarks about gay people in a phone call.

The minutes reveal discussions between the party's top officials who went on to hire Richardson.

"We will face some tough times and need to decide whether to take injunctions out or not," the minutes said, as cited by the Mirror.

After the barrister was introduced to the party officials, they agreed "that the party in general must get a grip" on what its members publish.