EXCLUSIVE: Enfield Conservatives chair suspended after Nazi uniform photo emerges

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EXCLUSIVE: Enfield Conservatives chair suspended after Nazi uniform photo emerges

Colin Davis tells Jewish News: ‘I have no recollection of this at all. Yes, there were various wild parties, very perverse themes expressed... I can't absolutely rule it out’

Lee Harpin is the Jewish News's political editor

Colin Davis, an enthusiast for military uniforms, has been suspended as chairman of the Southgate Conservative Association over this image of him, taken decades ago, wearing a Nazi uniform.
Colin Davis, an enthusiast for military uniforms, has been suspended as chairman of the Southgate Conservative Association over this image of him, taken decades ago, wearing a Nazi uniform.

The chair of the Enfield Southgate Conservative Association has been suspended pending an investigation over claims he was photographed dressed up in full German Nazi military uniform.

Colin Davis confirmed to Jewish News on Tuesday that his north London local party had decided to take action, but added: “I am unable to comment unfortunately.”

The photograph, which was sent to Jewish News this week, appears to show Davis dressed up in full Nazi regalia, in the back garden of a property.

Another source familiar with the photograph alleged it had been taken during the 1980s, and had been found at a property previously lived in by Davis and his former wife.

Asked to explain the photograph ahead of his suspension, Davis initially told Jewish News he could not recall dressing up as a Nazi and denied being into far-right politics.

But he admitted: “I have no recollection of this at all. Yes, there were various wild parties, very perverse themes expressed… I can’t absolutely rule it out.”

It is understood that Davis was originally scheduled to stand for Enfield Southgate Tories as a candidate in next month’s local elections.

Sources said he had been pencilled in as a possible candidate in the Oakwood ward in the north London council, which is home to a sizeable Jewish community.

A profile of Davis on the Enfield Southgate Conservatives website was removed on Tuesday. But one day earlier it had confirmed Davis is “busy running popular campaigns of national relevance and starting to campaign for the May 2022 local elections.”

Davis added in the profile that he was “born and bred” in the Enfield constituency and said “we face a hostile Labour held Borough Council and an equally hostile representative in Westminster.”

On Monday night, the Jewish Leadership Council and Board of Deputies hosted a hustings event at the local Cockfosters and Southgate Synagogue ahead of the local elections on May 5th.

Ahead of his suspension Davis also told Jewish News: “I have a long history of representing all the principles for which the Conservative party stands.

“I’m not familiar with the photograph you are referring to. I have in the past served as a councillor. I have done all sorts of things. I have exposed extremism wherever it is to be found.

“On the other hand like Voltaire, I have tended to defend those whose own extremism has sometimes manifested itself in extreme types of intolerance. That doesn’t include defence of Nazism.”

Asked again if he could ever recall dressing up in Nazi regalia, Davis said: “I recall attending a fair number of parties where bizarre garb of all kinds was called upon.

“There used to be an awful lot of wild parties in the 1980s. I certainly can’t recall all of them.

“Presumably somebody has supplied you with the photograph and presumably they can offer you some details on how and when it was taken and everything else.

“I do not recall parading around… at the time I suspect I was a serving member of the British Army reserves.”

Davis acted as a freelance consultant for a “brief period” for the firm Carters Solicitors which ended in May 2021. According to a now deleted profile on the company’s website he was previously Head of Military Law with “a national law firm.” He is described as having a to “willingness to adopt unpopular causes” and is also said to be “well connected with the British Armed Forces.

Also working for Carters Solicitors, which said it was “sickened” by the photograph. is David Burrowes, the former Enfield Southgate Conservative MP. Burrowes is widely tipped to stand again for the Conservatives at the next election in Enfield Southgate, where he was defeated by Labour’s Bambos Charalambous in 2019.

In a statement, Councillor Joanne Laban, leader of the Enfield Southgate Conservatives confirmed: “Mr Davis has been suspended from the party by Enfield Southgate Conservative Association pending investigation.

“The Conservative Party takes allegations of this nature extremely seriously and the swift action taken reflects this.”

Laban added the local party “are proud to have members of the Jewish Community standing in the local elections.”

Pointing to two candidates standing in the Oakwood and the Cockfosters wards she continued: “I look forward to both Julian Sampson and Ruby Sampson joining the Conservative team on Enfield Council.”

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