A former council candidate is looking to join the Canvey Independent Party and give a voice to local people after being kicked out of the Conservative party,

David Manclark, who stood as a Tory borough council candidate in the island’s North ward in 2016, has been banned from the Castle Point Conservative Association for two years.

He was initially suspended in November, with the party citing “inappropriate use of social media”, but has now been kicked out.

Mr Manclark admits writing on Facebook posts that criticised central government after the Grenfell disaster, as well as criticising Castle Point MP, Rebecca Harris, after she voted against a bill to include animal sentience in UK law.

But now he is claiming it is all irrelevant anyway with his faith in the Conservative Party dwindling in recent years, while stating he naturally aligns himself much close to the independent party.

Mr Manclark said: “I am disappointed, but relieved at the same time. Looking at the Conservative party, there are a number of goings on nationally that I certainly don’t agree with. The reason I went into politics in Canvey was to give advice to give Canvey residents and do as much as I could for Canvey people.”

The former Tory candidate claimed the independent party worked throughout the year, unlike his former party.

Mr Manclark added: “I align myself more with the independent party on Canvey. They work all year round, tirelessly and are visible throughout the community, whether it be through voluntary work and so forth. They constantly push through the views of residents, and not just at election time.”

Chas Mumford, chairman of the Conservative Association, said the group would have nothing further to add.

Dave Blackwell, leader of Canvey Independent Party, said: “I actually bumped into Mr Manclark down the town centre on Saturday at the NHS event. It does seem bizarre, no matter what party you represent, you still have freedom of speech. He is a passionate man and you need people like him in your community.”