Cll Nickerson’s statement in full:

In recently sharing a defamatory image of Jeremy Corbyn on my twitter account I have demonstrated a terrible lack of judgement. I have let down my own wife, children and the people of Beverley that I am supposed to represent. In trying to explain it away that my account was hacked I made a knee-jerk reaction which further let people down and only made the problem worse. I have no excuse for this at all other than foolishness and stupidity on my part and panic in the face of many thousands of people contacting me online – a situation I have never experienced before and hope to never do again. 

I have spent the past week apologising to Mr Corbyn, my family, my colleagues  and others for this tweet. I have also come to an arrangement for substantial damages payable to Mr Corbyn and posted an apology directly on twitter and have written a further personal apology letter to him. 

Having cleared this legal stage, I am now able to publicly apologise to you, friends and people in my ward. I am sincerely sorry for posting that tweet, I have no excuse at all, it was completely miss-judged, it wasn’t funny or satirical, it was reckless and stupid on my part, especially as an elected representative, I have no defence whatsoever. 

I have left from the Conservative Group at East Riding Council and going forward will be an independent councillor working in cooperation other ward councillors from all parties. As well as financial recompense to Mr Corbyn, I have also promised to spend the next year raising £10,000 for youth charities in Beverley including the boxing club so something more positive might eventually come out of this.

I have made a terrible mistake, I have let you all down, I am so very sorry.