Ex-TV and West End performer aims to represent area in Brussels
Former actor Louise Bours hopes her voice projection skills will prove invaluable on the campaign trail as she seeks election to the European parliament in 2014.
The North West UKIP candidate has appeared in TV series such as Band of Gold , Peak Practice and Liverpool-based soap Brookside as well as performing in West End musicals and fronting 1940s big bands.
But now Louise, a single mother to Millie, 11, and Lainie, nine, has ‘retired from show business’ to concentrate on getting elected and is number two on UKIP’s regional list.
The proportional representation system used in European elections means she stands a good chance of being returned although, ironically, UKIP policy is to withdraw from the European Union.
“I think the crux of the issue that we are all sovereign nations and democratic nations and when we come of age at 18 we are given the right to vote and we should be able to vote for people who make important decisions on our behalf. The reason I joined UKIP was because I felt all that had been taken away from us.”
If elected, Louise would have a Brussels-based team but intends to spend most of her time in the North West, supporting local people on their doorstep. “How can you help anybody if you are completely detached sitting in an office in Brussels?” she mused.
UKIP hit the headlines recently when its former MEP Godfrey Bloom came out with comments about ‘bongo bongo land’ and referred to a group of UKIP women who did not clean behind their fridges as ‘sluts’. Louise agrees such language is unacceptable in a professional political organisation.
“We want to shake off the BNP in blazers thing,” said Louise, who explained that former members of far right parties were banned from joining UKIP. Stressing the point, she explained that her father is actually Dutch and her full name is van der Bours.
Louise denies UKIP is a one man party in the shape of its charismatic leader Nigel Farage but is clearly a fan. “What you see is what you get with him. There are no airs and graces.”
Louise, 44, has previously held roles as councillor on both Congleton borough and town councils and was elected mayor of Congleton in 2006. She has represented the Conservative Party in the past but also voted Labour in 1997 and accepts she has been on a political journey.
Currently a ‘penniless student’, Louise is studying social science, majoring in politics, at Lancaster University because she hopes academic learning will support her political ambitions.
Louise, a member of the UKIP national executive, hopes her party will win hundreds of council seats in the local elections being held on the same day as the European elections but not in this area. And she says UKIP will stand in all local seats for the 2015 Westminster elections, with Steve Ingram already selected to fight in Chester.