Martin Curtis announces to Whittlesey Tories he will not seek re election to Fenland District Council

11:26 28 August 2014

Cllr Martin Curtis. Picture: Steve Williams.

Cllr Martin Curtis. Picture: Steve Williams.

Archant

Former county council leader Martin Curtis told Whittlesey Tories last night he would not be seeking re-election to Fenland District Council next year.

“It is clear that I cannot work full time and serve my town in the same way I have in the past - something has to give,” he said today.

Cllr Curtis represents the Kingsmoor ward on the district council and was unopposed at the 2011 election.

In his time at Fenland Hall he has been chairman of the planning committee until 2010 when a new leader, Alan Melton, replaced him. Cllr Curtis later became vice chairman of planning, stood aside during the controversial ‘supermarket gate’ period and never returned. He was asked, in 2012, by Cllr Melton to resign, refused and was sacked.

“My sacking baffled me and others,” he wrote on his blog at the time.

“Cllr Melton invited me resign to prevent the indignity of being sacked. I asked for the reason for this and I was told it was because of ‘community perception’. I challenged and suggested that I had not seen or heard any issues in respect of this.”

He said that “having consulted a few people, I chose to decline the request.”

Cllr Curtis remains a Cambridgeshire county councillor for Whittlesey North, winning the leadership after the 2013 elections but resigning earlier this year as the cabinet system was replaced with a committee structure at Shire Hall.

He said he took the role “promising not to become embroiled in petty politics and to do the best for the people of Cambridgeshire.”

But he said with the change to the new committee system in May he felt “the evidence of the last year and, especially of recent months, suggests that the council will become embroiled in petty politics at the expense of the huge strategic issues the council is succeeding with”

He also expressed his fears that new structure “could lose focus on protecting vulnerable Cambridgeshire residents from harm”.

Cllr Curtis said his decision to quit after the annual meeting of the council in May “has been the hardest decision I have ever had to make.

Since standing down as county leader Cllr Curtis has been appointed to a directorship at Curtin & Co, the public affairs consultancy.

Cllr Curtis said today: “When I took up my new job in May I said I would give that my total focus for three months and then see where I was at- something that was right for my employer, but which also gave me a period to reflect about the extent of my council commitments.

“At the forefront of my thinking has always been Whittlesey - the one thing I will never do is let Whittlesey down.”

He said was “proud of my record at Fenland District Council and especially the way I have stood up for Whittlesey residents and I can guarantee that this does not mean I won’t make my voice heard there - I most certainly will, but it will be in a different way.”

0 comments

Comments

Welcome , please leave your message below.

Optional - JPG files only
Optional - MP3 files only
Optional - 3GP, AVI, MOV, MPG or WMV files
Comments

Please log in to leave a comment and share your views with other Wisbech Standard visitors.

We enable people to post comments with the aim of encouraging open debate.

Only people who register and sign up to our terms and conditions can post comments. These terms and conditions explain our house rules and legal guidelines.

Comments are not edited by Wisbech Standard staff prior to publication but may be automatically filtered.

If you have a complaint about a comment please contact us by clicking on the Report This Comment button next to the comment.

Not a member yet?

Register to create your own unique Wisbech Standard account for free.

Signing up is free, quick and easy and offers you the chance to add comments, personalise the site with local information picked just for you, and more.

Sign up now

29 minutes ago
Staggered Junction A47 to Walsoken and Emneth. Picture: Steve Williams.

Three men, all wearing balaclavas, forced their way into a house in Emneth last night, attacked and robbed a man of £1,000, and fled.

Cambridgeshire Flag competition

Six final designs have been selected for the competition launched this summer.

9 minutes ago
Wisbech & District Talking Newspaper. Peter Fewster (Vice Chairman) handing over first recording to be produced on USB sticks to a member of staff at Wisbech Royal Mail Sorting Office.

A charity which supports people with hearing difficulties enjoyed a momentous first on Wednesday.

34 minutes ago
Partners Tony Cheetham, Jenny Rushmere, Neil John and senior partner John Aitkin.  Picture: STEVE WILLIAMS.

A solicitors firm has raised more than £5,500 for East Anglian Air Ambulance.

Most read stories

E-edition