A former UKIP MP candidate said he has made a formal complaint after claiming he was “bullied and assaulted” by police at the Black Lives Matter protest on Saturday.

Martin Costello, who stood unsuccessfully in the 2017 general election, told the Adver he had gone to the march at Regent Circus to interview protesters for his “documentary on Black Lives Matter”.

He posted an almost 14-minute long video to his YouTube channel on Saturday night showing him asking questions of those present, including asking a dozen or so demonstrators if they thought there was a problem with racism in this country. He was told they did.

The footage shows him being moved away from the crowd by two police liaison officers. He asked of one officer: “Why are you singling me out, then?” The officer, dressed in a light blue tabard, replied: “You’re the one causing the problem.” The sergeant appeared to go on to say the former UKIP candidate, who was suspended from the party in 2018 over a fracas at a left wing bookshop in London then transferred his allegiance to the Brexit Party a year later, was “affecting the harmony” of the protest.

Mr Costello said he had been “utterly shocked” by the police action, adding he had already made a complaint to the Independent Office for Police Conduct.

A spokesman for Wiltshire Police said the force would not comment on individual cases. But he said the Black Lives Matter protest had passed peacefully.  

“We would like to thank everyone who attended for acting responsibly," he said.

“As we’ve said previously, we will always allow the public to protest peacefully and lawfully without enforcement from our officers. We will only step in if required to protect public safety or to prevent crime.”

In an earlier video, posted to YouTube on July 4, Costello jokes about anti-racism protesters “taking the knee” – done in solidarity with George Floyd, who died after a police officer held a knee to his neck. Reaching for a pint of stout, Mr Costello tells the viewer: “I’m not going to ask you to bend the knee, I’m going to ask you to bend the elbow, because do you know what? All black pints matter.”