A former Brexit Party parliamentary candidate has said he is “disappointed” to not be able to stand in the upcoming General Election.

William Berry was hoping to fight for the Watford seat, but has been forced to step down after Nigel Farage announced the Brexit Party would not contest any of the 317 seats won by the Conservatives in 2017’s election.

But Mr Berry said he was hopeful the decision would mean Brexit could “finally be achieved”.

He said: “I am disappointed not to contest the Watford seat as I truly wanted to deliver Brexit and change politics for good.

“We had many great policies besides a clean Brexit, including reforming/replacing the House of Lords, support a fairer voting system and reduce the number of MPs in a bloated House of Commons. However, the decision to stand down is the right one.

“My main concern was that the Free Trade Agreement negotiations with the EU do not extend beyond 31 December 2020. Boris has now promised this, and I am therefore happy to back the Tory deal.”

Mr Berry added he found out the news by watching Mr Farage’s speech on twitter, although said he “had a feeling” the announcement was coming.

He continued: “Many parliamentary candidates had voiced our concerns at splitting leave vote in marginal seats. I knew that Mr Farage was also keen to avoid splitting leave vote and was in discussions with Mr Johnson.

“Some Brexiters still want me to stand as they want a clean break Brexit. However, I think the Tory deal is a reasonable compromise that we can all get behind.”

But Ian Stotesbury, Liberal Democrat parliamentary candidate for Watford, said the move makes the Conservatives the new Brexit Party who “will work to deliver a Brexit that will damage our economy and cost jobs in Watford”.

He continued: “With Richard Harrington standing down, many moderate Conservatives here are telling me they can no longer support the party.

“Only the Liberal Democrats will work to stop Brexit and make sure we keep a strong economy and our place in the world. I am the only candidate who lives in Watford, I love the area and would be hugely honoured to be its MP.”

Chris Ostrowski, parliamentary candidate for Labour in Watford, added: “The Brexit Party’s decision to chicken out from contesting Watford was entirely predictable.

“Nigel Farage has worked out that Boris Johnson’s real intent is to force a hard Brexit on the people of this country, trashing our economy and destroying jobs in Watford.

“In Watford we can’t afford to split the remain vote. I will continue to back remain in all circumstances.”

Dean Russell, Conservative parliamentary candidate for Watford, said: "I understand this must have been a difficult decision and I respect him doing so. It is clear that the Conservative Party is the only party to deliver Brexit with a deal."