Former union boss was banned from re-running for the leadership last month

Former Ucatt general secretary Alan Ritchie intends to halt the union’s current leadership ballot in its tracks by mounting a High Court injunction, the union has said.

Ritchie – who was banned from re-running for the leadership by the union last month – issued a “derivative claim” at London’s High Court today, requesting that the union pick up the costs of the planned injunction.

Speaking outside the High Court, Spencer Wood of law firm OH Parsons, who is representing Ucatt, said: “He [Ritchie] is bringing a derivative claim – he’s suggesting he’s acting as a member of the union for the benefit of the union.

“He wants indemnity of the costs. [Our understanding is that] he’s then going to make an application for the injunction.”

Ucatt general secretary George Guy said: “This was an unforeseen situation.”

The union’s election, which began last Friday, is currently between two candidates - Yorkshire regional secretary Steve Murphy and London regional secretary Jerry Swain.

In a separate development the Certification Office for trade unions - which declared the union’s 2009 election void in April, forcing Ritchie to resign - confirmed it has received a formal complaint from former candidate Mick Dooley, who was also banned from running last month.