Wetherspoon's chair Tim Martin slams Oxbridge "old-boy network" for ganging up on Boris Johnson

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Boris Johnson has been criticised for claiming the UK sends the EU £350m a week (Source: Getty)

JD Wetherspoon chairman Tim Martin has criticised the "pro-EU Oxbridge orthodoxy", in an article defending foreign secretary Boris Johnson.

The founder of the pub chain and Leave campaigner slammed commentators at The Times, The Financial Times and the Evening Standard for their "distorted analyses", in a piece sent to journalists this morning.

Hailing Boris Johnson as "a rare Oxbridge nonconformist", Martin wrote that although the £350m a week figure which Johnson has been criticised for repeating was not entirely accurate, it was a lesser evil than "dishonest projections" of the Remain campaign.

"Outside the cloistered world of academia, London, the City and Westminster, the public debated these issues and weighed up the alleged lies and exaggerations on both sides. Its conclusion was that the leave campaign was more sinned against than sinning, hence the referendum result."

Martin has previously argued that Brexit poses a threat to EU economies, not the UK's.

Addressing "conformist Oxbridge economists" in today's article, he said: "In most of these debates, chaps, you were outthought by the general public - a good lesson for you."

Despite the arguments over costs associated with membership of the EU, Johnson is currently favourite among Conservative members to succeed Theresa May as Prime Minister.

Read more: May urged to investigate if BoJo broke ministerial code

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