Louise Bours (born 23 December 1968), also known as Louise van de Bours, is a former Member of the European Parliament (MEP) for the North West England region. She was elected in 2014 as a UK Independence Party candidate but resigned from the party 2018, and sat as an independent until she stood down at the 2019 election.
|UKIP Health Spokesperson|
24 July 2014 – 16 September 2016
|Preceded by||Position established|
|Succeeded by||Suzanne Evans|
|Member of the European Parliament|
for North West England
1 July 2014 – 1 July 2019
|Preceded by||Nick Griffin|
|Succeeded by||Henrik Overgaard-Nielsen|
|Born||23 December 1968|
Congleton, Cheshire, England
|Political party||Independent (2018 - present)|
UK Independence Party (Until 2018)
Bours' father is Dutch. She trained as an actress and singer at Mountview Academy of Theatre Arts. She was also a member of the D'Oyly Carte Opera Company from year 2000, and a resident at the Savoy Theatre in London. She went on to appear in Brookside, Peak Practice and Band of Gold and musicals and fronted 1940s-style big bands. However, Bours has said she "retired from showbusiness" in order to concentrate on politics. Bours is a single mother to two children.
Louise Bours used her surname "van de Bours" as late as August 2013, in her LinkedIn profile discussing her musical career, but later dropped the "van de" and appeared as "Louise Bours" on UKIP's MEP party list in 2013. The tussenvoegsel in her name was allegedly more of a stage name than a legal name, according to the Huffington Post.
Bours previously served as a Conservative councillor on Congleton borough and town councils and was elected mayor in 2006. In January 2015, Bours was disqualified as a member of Congleton town council after more than six months of non-attendance. Despite receiving an £80,000 salary from the European Union following the Brexit referendum, Bours' voting record in the EU parliament dropped by 22.6% to just 43.09% overall. Only fellow UKIP MEP Paul Nuttall and three other MEPs have a lower turnout in the entire European Parliament.
As an MEP she served as UKIP health spokesperson, and came into opposition with former leader Nigel Farage on health issues; in particular Bours supports the principle of a free NHS, the English smoking ban and plain tobacco packaging, in opposition to Farage. However, Bours has opposed EU tax increases on electronic cigarettes, describing the proposals as "an act of sheer folly". Bours also opposes the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership due to the impacts it would have on the NHS, saying in 2014 that: "TTIP is there for the benefit of one thing only — big business. I've got a message for Len McCluskey and Unite. UKIP will fight alongside you to ensure the NHS is excluded from this agreement."
Bours appeared on Question Time discussing her role as health spokesperson.
In November 2018, Bours resigned from UKIP. She sits as an independent MEP in the Europe of Freedom and Direct Democracy group.
European Parliament elections 2014
On 25 May 2014, Bours was elected as MEP for the North West England, replacing British National Party leader Nick Griffin. She has said that she wants to "shake off the BNP in blazers thing", for UKIP and it has been claimed that she has teamed up with UKIP MEP Paul Nuttall in the north-west, which was "a particular cause of anger" within the party according to former UKIP members, who accused them of forming part of a "cosy cartel".
General election 2015
- "Key dates ahead". European Parliament. 20 May 2017. Retrieved 28 May 2019.
- "Key dates ahead". BBC News Online. British Broadcasting Corporation. 22 May 2017. Retrieved 28 May 2019.
- "UKIP MEP hopeful Louise has showbiz in her bones". Chester Chronicle. 5 December 2013. Retrieved 5 May 2014.
- Meredith, Charlotte (30 May 2014). "Just Who Is The Ukip MEP Who Tackled Footballer Joey Barton?". The Huffington Post UK. Retrieved 17 May 2016.
- Eden, Richard; Walker, Tim (17 January 2014). "Ukip faces 'stitch-up' claims over 'cosy' by-election contest". The Daily Telegraph. Retrieved 17 May 2016.
- "UKIP by-election hopeful changed to 'less foreign-sounding' name". Political Scrapbook.
- "'New UKIP' will test candidates on media". The Times. 23 January 2014. Retrieved 27 November 2018.
- Pitel, Laura (23 January 2015). "Council sacks Ukip member for failing to turn up". The Times. Retrieved 18 May 2016.
- Hewitt, Daniel (29 March 2018). UKIP MEPs defend £80k salary despite lowest voting records in EU. ITV News. Retrieved 3 April 2018 – via YouTube.
- "Cheshire PCC election: Conservative John Dwyer wins". BBC News. 16 November 2012.
- Cooper, Charlie (23 January 2015). "Ukip's official health spokesperson has 'no experience in health'". The Independent. Retrieved 18 May 2016.
- "EU plan to raise duty on e-cigarettes act of folly, says UKIP MEP Louise Bours". Rochdale Online. 4 March 2016. Retrieved 19 May 2016.
- Bours, Louise. "The TTIP Threat – Louise Bours MEP Conference Speech". UKIP. Retrieved 19 May 2016.
- "Assembly stunned as MEP Bours backs Unite". Morning Star. 27 September 2014. Archived from the original on 30 June 2016. Retrieved 29 May 2016.
- Weaver, Matthew (30 May 2014). "Joey Barton attributes 'four ugly girls' remark on Question Time to nerves". The Guardian. Retrieved 17 May 2016.
- "Joey Barton apologises for 'ugly girl' UKIP comments". BBC News. 30 May 2014. Retrieved 17 May 2016.
- Gander, Kashmira (29 May 2014). "Joey Barton on Question Time: QPR footballer accused of sexism after comparing EU elections to 'choosing between ugly girls'". The Independent. Retrieved 17 May 2016.
- "Louise BOORS". Europarl.europa.eu. European Parliament. Retrieved 27 November 2018.
- Pidd, Helen (25 May 2014). "Nick Griffin concedes European parliament seat as BNP votes fall away". The Guardian. Retrieved 17 May 2016.
- "BNP leader Nick Griffin loses North West Euro seat". BBC News. 26 May 2014. Retrieved 17 May 2016.
- "Knowsley parliamentary constituency - Election 2015 - BBC News". BBC News. Retrieved 17 May 2016.