Labour claims Tories ‘colluded’ to keep secret one of their town councillors upped sticks and left Wisbech last November

Sue Marshall. North East Cambridgeshire Constituency Labour Party (CLP)chairman.

Sue Marshall. North East Cambridgeshire Constituency Labour Party (CLP)chairman. - Credit: Archant

Labour has hit out at local Conservatives who they claim “have closed ranks to keep a town councillor in post even though he has left the area to live with his girlfriend”.

Local Labour constituency party chairman Sue Marshall said: “Councillor Stephen Brunton was elected last May and moved out of Wisbech in November yet this is the first anyone’s heard about it.

“It is grossly unfair to his constituents in Octavia Hill Ward for him not to be available to them on a daily basis to deal with their problems.

“It is undemocratic for an elected representative to fail to serve his constituents in this way and an absolute disgrace that the Conservative town councillors have colluded to keep this secret instead of Cllr Brunton doing the right thing by resigning and a by-election being called.

“Conservative town councillors have put party politics before the best interests of the townspeople. In the last eighteen months three of their councillors have caused by-elections at town and district level in Wisbech and Whittlesey. One moved away, one had irregularities in election documentation and another had a criminal conviction.

“It’s not up to his fellow Tories to say he can represent his constituents just as well from another county. They should have been told and I think we all know what they’d think about it.

“He has three years to run and it’s shocking that this has been kept quiet for so long. The councillor himself should have announced he was moving.

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“Now the Tories are scrabbling around for excuses and one of them actually insulted the electorate by Tweeting that he hoped they’d find the ‘love story understandable and endearing’. ”It’s not. The only honourable thing this councillor can now do is resign immediately.”