Immigration on a whole new scale: How angels sparked Ukip mutiny

Stories emerged this week of a row over ‘occult’ influences infiltrating Ukip’s Somerset branch. Adam Lusher met Angelic healers  – and party members – Glen and Colleen Tucker, to investigate

The UK Independence Party, it is perhaps not unfair to suggest, has had its occasional brushes with eccentricity.

Indeed, the Prime Minister himself once made cruel, and surely unjustified, reference to its members as “fruitcakes and loons”.   

But as Ukip’s Somerset county treasurer pours me a beetroot, celery, avocado and hemp-powder superjuice, I am not sure if this is quite what the PM had in mind. “I perceive my healing angel to be a pillar of light,” says Colleen Tucker, treasurer, Angelic Reiki master and certified Inca shaman.

“During a hypnotic process, I discovered that I belonged to the family of Archangel Michael. I believe there are many of us on the planet who have affiliations to Archangel Michael, so that’s what I mean when I belong to the family of Archangel Michael. But that’s not my healing angel. That’s another angel entirely…”

Perhaps Mr Cameron was thinking more of blazers, and “back off Brussels”. Godfrey Bloom, sluts and talk of “bongo-bongo land”. That sort of thing. So perhaps he – and others – have drastically misread the internal tensions within Ukip. Because here in Glastonbury the world of the blazers and the spirit world of Archangel Michael have collided. Most unhappily. Mrs Tucker, 59, and her husband Glen, 68, a corporate trainer, both keen Wells Ukip party activists, call it a “can of worms”. It was opened, they say, a fortnight ago.

At a Somerset county gathering, Graham Livings, head of Ukip’s Wells branch – with whom the Tuckers are not amicably atuned – stood up to demand: “Mr Chairman, are members of the Glastonbury occult allowed to be members of Ukip?”

 

The Tuckers say they laughed it off (and Mr Chairman informed the meeting that “the occult” was not on Ukip’s proscribed list).

But on Tuesday Mrs Tucker was phoned up by a local journalist and asked about her Angelic Reiki website (“Angelic Reiki Practitioners work with the Angels, Ascended Masters and Galactic Beings …”) The row quickly went national. Mr Livings quit as Wells party chairman and his friend Jake Baynes, 40, a geography teacher, stood down as prospective Ukip parliamentary candidate the constituency.

Mr Livings told newspapers about the infiltration of the Wells Ukip party, by “the Glastonbury occult crowd”. “They are oddballs putting on these retreats where they guarantee angels will be present. And we’re experiencing such vitriol and bile from them.”

Speaking to The Independent, My Livings denied using political dark arts to undermine the Tuckers.  He said the real reason for drawing attention to Mrs Tuker’s Angelic Reiki website was because “I had received enquiries from prospective voters who were uncomfortable with the Tuckers as Ukip activists. 

“Call us old fashioned, but the kind of people I have been acquainted with over the years have come up through the Anglican Church, Christianity. They find the stuff on the angelic website very off-putting. They associated it with the occult.”

Mr Baynes said last night:  “Graham Livings certainly doesn’t practise the political 'dark arts.’ The Tuckers have been unbearably difficult. I don’t want to belittle what they believe, but I don’t think it has a place in politics.”

In their disappointingly normal semi-detached home, the Tuckers, very politely, put the record straight. First up, this “nonsense” about the occult.

Yes, says Mrs Tucker, there is a sign in the entrance lobby about “one nice witch” living here. That’s a joke. Yes, she does have a black cat, and yes, it is called Lu, and yes, that is short for Lucifer. “But Lucifer is an angel of light. People have edited and modified Christian teaching a little too much.”

Her £35-an-hour healing sessions involve nothing more sinister than soothing music, sympathetic chat, and the transfer of “angelic energy, from angels”.

Glen and Colleen Tucker near their home in Glastonbury (Tom Pilston) Glen and Colleen Tucker near their home in Glastonbury (Tom Pilston)
“And as for criticising me about speaking to Archangel Michael: well, frankly doesn’t everybody talk to angels?” she asks, rhetorically. We all get a gut instinct, inspiration – whether you follow those hints from your guardian angel is up to you.”

As far as the Tuckers are concerned, the vitriol is coming from Mr Livings’ camp.  They should not be “demonised” because of their work with angels. And if the occult means something sinister and hidden, Mr Livings, a retired local businessman, is the one using “dark arts” – of politics – bringing up the Angelic Reiki healing to undermine them. “He is the former mayor of Wells,” says Mr Tucker, “He wears a blazer, and he might like to think of himself as the political statesman. But he isn’t.”

The quarrel, they say, really stems from Mr Livings objecting to what he saw as the “micromanaging” of his friend Mr Baynes by his local party. The Tuckers say they were merely asserting the local party association’s right to have some say in the public pronouncements of their parliamentary candidate.

The Angelic Reiki had nothing to do with their Ukip activities until Mr Livings found out about it and publicised it.

In Ukip circles, Mr Tucker was just a corporate trainer who joined the party in 2012, because he was worried about the transfer of British sovereignty to Brussels.

And as for the group of Angelic Reiki infiltrators, “There is only one other Angelic Reiki master on the Wells party list,” says Mrs Tucker. “And she doesn’t come to Ukip meetings.”

So no, explains Mrs Tucker, the angels will have no say in Wells Ukip party policy. “Unfortunately not, they don’t have a position. They are apolitical.”

Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
ebooks
ebooksA special investigation by Andy McSmith
Life and Style
Google celebrates the 126th anniversary of the Eiffel Tower opening its doors to the public for the first time
techGoogle celebrates Paris's iconic landmark, which opened to the public 126 years ago today
News
Cleopatra the tortoise suffers from a painful disease that causes her shell to disintegrate; her new prosthetic one has been custom-made for her using 3D printing technology
newsCleopatra had been suffering from 'pyramiding'
Life and Style
Baroness Lane-Fox warned that large companies such as have become so powerful that governments and regulators are left behind
techTech giants have left governments and regulators behind
News
people
Arts and Entertainment
Coachella and Lollapalooza festivals have both listed the selfie stick devices as “prohibited items”
music
Sport
Nigel Owens was targeted on Twitter because of his sexuality during the Six Nations finale between England and France earlier this month
rugbyReferee Nigel Owens on coming out, and homophobic Twitter abuse
Arts and Entertainment
Tracey Emin visits her 1990s work ‘My Bed’ at Tate Britain in London, where it is back on display from today
artsBut how does the iconic work stand up, 16 years on?
  • Get to the point
2015 General Election
May2015

Poll of Polls

Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Recruitment Genius: Senior Web Designer / Front End Developer

£28000 - £32000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This fast expanding web managem...

Ashdown Group: Trainee Consultant - Surrey / South West London

£22000 per annum + pension,bonus,career progression: Ashdown Group: An establi...

Ashdown Group: Trainee Consultant - Surrey/ South West London

£22000 per annum + pension,bonus,career progression: Ashdown Group: An establi...

Ashdown Group: Recruitment Consultant / Account Manager - Surrey / SW London

£40000 per annum + realistic targets: Ashdown Group: A thriving recruitment co...

Day In a Page

No postcode? No vote

Floating voters

How living on a houseboat meant I didn't officially 'exist'
Louis Theroux's affable Englishman routine begins to wear thin

By Reason of Insanity

Louis Theroux's affable Englishman routine begins to wear thin
Power dressing is back – but no shoulderpads!

Power dressing is back

But banish all thoughts of Eighties shoulderpads
Spanish stone-age cave paintings 'under threat' after being re-opened to the public

Spanish stone-age cave paintings in Altamira 'under threat'

Caves were re-opened to the public
'I was the bookies’ favourite to be first to leave the Cabinet'

Vince Cable interview

'I was the bookies’ favourite to be first to leave the Cabinet'
Election 2015: How many of the Government's coalition agreement promises have been kept?

Promises, promises

But how many coalition agreement pledges have been kept?
The Gaza fisherman who built his own reef - and was shot dead there by an Israeli gunboat

The death of a Gaza fisherman

He built his own reef, and was fatally shot there by an Israeli gunboat
Saudi Arabia's airstrikes in Yemen are fuelling the Gulf's fire

Saudi airstrikes are fuelling the Gulf's fire

Arab intervention in Yemen risks entrenching Sunni-Shia divide and handing a victory to Isis, says Patrick Cockburn
Zayn Malik's departure from One Direction shows the perils of fame in the age of social media

The only direction Zayn could go

We wince at the anguish of One Direction's fans, but Malik's departure shows the perils of fame in the age of social media
Young Magician of the Year 2015: Meet the schoolgirl from Newcastle who has her heart set on being the competition's first female winner

Spells like teen spirit

A 16-year-old from Newcastle has set her heart on being the first female to win Young Magician of the Year. Jonathan Owen meets her
Jonathan Anderson: If fashion is a cycle, this young man knows just how to ride it

If fashion is a cycle, this young man knows just how to ride it

British designer Jonathan Anderson is putting his stamp on venerable house Loewe
Number plates scheme could provide a licence to offend in the land of the free

Licence to offend in the land of the free

Cash-strapped states have hit on a way of making money out of drivers that may be in collision with the First Amendment, says Rupert Cornwell
From farm to fork: Meet the Cornish fishermen, vegetable-growers and butchers causing a stir in London's top restaurants

From farm to fork in Cornwall

One man is bringing together Cornwall's most accomplished growers, fishermen and butchers with London's best chefs to put the finest, freshest produce on the plates of some of the country’s best restaurants
Robert Parker interview: The world's top wine critic on tasting 10,000 bottles a year, absurd drinking notes and New World wannabes

Robert Parker interview

The world's top wine critic on tasting 10,000 bottles a year, absurd drinking notes and New World wannabes
Don't believe the stereotype - or should you?

Don't believe the stereotype - or should you?

We exaggerate regional traits and turn them into jokes - and those on the receiving end are in on it too, says DJ Taylor