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Sunday 25 September 2016

Journalist Dan Hodges streaks through Westminster after losing Ukip bet

Published 07/01/2016 | 09:31

Daily Telegraph political journalist Dan Hodges streaks past Downing Street, London
Daily Telegraph political journalist Dan Hodges streaks past Downing Street, London
Dan Hodges performed the forfeit for underestimating the Ukip's influence during last year's general election

Political journalist Dan Hodges braved the rain as he streaked in Westminster after losing a bet.

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The 46-year-old ran from Trafalgar Square in London and down Whitehall in nothing but trainers and a pair of black Calvin Klein underpants as a forfeit for underestimating the Ukip's influence during last year's general election.

In May 2015 he tweeted: "If Ukip break 6% I'll streak down Whitehall" - but the party managed a share of the vote of more than 12%.

True to his word, Mr Hodges completed the run in 3.37 minutes, despite a bookmaker taking bets on where he might get arrested along the way.

Arriving at Parliament Square he said: "I actually feel invigorated, more people should consider naked running.

"Perhaps next time we can turn it into a mass charity flash streak."

The sponsored feat raised more than £1,000 for Terence Higgins Trust and Elizabeth's Legacy of Hope, through donations from Ladbrokes and an online page.

The Terrence Higgins Trust provides support and advice services for people with, or at risk of contracting, HIV both in and outside of the UK.

Its executive director of fundraising, Sonya Trivedy, said after the run: " It is all in good fun but, for Terrence Higgins Trust, Dan's choice to donate underpins a serious issue.

"Ukip leader Nigel Farage's comments before the election, that migrants living with HIV should be blocked from entering the UK, showed an outrageous lack of understanding of the issue, and were based on absolute fiction.

"So Dan's choice of a shared donation to Terrence Higgins Trust because of these outrageous and dangerous claims means a lot."

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