SHIPLEY MP Philip Davies says he will not be defecting to UKIP, despite the fact he agrees with nearly everything they say.

Mr Davies, a strident Eurosceptic, was being tipped as another Tory MP who could leave to join Nigel Farage's party after the high-profile defection of backbencher Douglas Carswell last week.

And UKIP treasurer Stuart Wheeler, a former Tory donor, added to speculation by claiming he had held talks with eight unnamed Conservative MPs.

But Mr Davies last night dismissed any doubt over his future in the Tories, saying: "I won't be defecting to UKIP."

Mr Davies said while he was "as passionate about leaving the EU as anybody", only the Conservatives could deliver an in-out referendum.

He said: "UKIP have never stood against me in a general election in Shipley. I very much hope they never do so.

"I agree with UKIP on very nearly everything, but I can argue for these things within the Conservative Party."

Mr Davies confirmed he did occasionally speak to Mr Farage.

He said: "I have spoken to Nigel Farage but not about defecting. He has never asked me to defect and I have never offered him any hint that I would do so.

"I have spoken to Nigel Farage on a number of occasions because we agree with each other on leaving the EU. I will work with anybody in any political party to achieve that goal.

"I often sit down and chat to Gerry Sutcliffe - but it doesn't mean I will be joining the Labour Party."

Mr Carswell, MP for Clacton in Essex, announced on Thursday he was joining UKIP and that he would be fighting to keep his seat in a by-election in October.

He is a member of the Better Off Out anti-EU campaign group founded by Mr Davies in 2006.

Mr Davis said while Mr Carswell would continue to be a friend of his, he thought his defection had been "misguided".

He said: "Obviously, I am disappointed. I like Douglas, he is a decent guy and he has been a good MP.

"It is obviously disappointing when somebody of his calibre decides to join a different party. I think he is misguided."

Mr Farage said a by-election win for his party in Clacton would signal a "landslide in British politics".

A Survation poll gave Ukip a massive 44 point lead over David Cameron's party and Mr Farage predicted that a win would result in "more and more people coming over to us".