Feuding councillors add to troubled council’s woes

Coun Renee Blow
Coun Renee Blow
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Warring members of South Ribble Council have launched a raft of official complaints about one another, despite a call for unity.

Councillor Claire Hamilton submitted a complaint to the council’s Standard’s committee about Tory deputy chief whip Coun Mike Nelson, over derogatory comments he is alleged to have made about her in a council canteen.

Coun Mike Nelson

Coun Mike Nelson

Independent Conservative Coun Paul Wharton has also reported Coun Nelson for allegedly swearing at him twice on the same occasion.

Coun Hamilton has herself been reported to the same committee by Tory Renee Blow, over claims she told the media about a court appearance Coun Blow made in 2009.

At the time it was reported Coun Blow was ordered to keep the peace after a row with neighbours.

Coun Blow said: “It’s about her (Coun Hamilton’s) behaviour in general. She doesn’t know me, it’s bygone days and not fair on other people involved. I work hard for my community and I really can’t be bothered taking her on, but she’s sitting and playing like a child and it’s not suitable behaviour for a councillor.”

Coun Claire Hamilton and Coun Paul Wharton pictured outside Leyland Civic Centre

Coun Claire Hamilton and Coun Paul Wharton pictured outside Leyland Civic Centre

Coun Hamilton said she was surprised to have been reported after passing on information requested by a journalist and is “confident there is no error on my part.”

She feels she and Coun Wharton have been targetted for being vocal about the councils recent failings.

Coun Wharton said he reported Coun Nelson because “too much of this goes on unreported”.

Coun Nelson was unavailable for comment.

New leader Coun Peter Mullineaux has called on parties to work more closely together to move forward after heavy criticism over licensing failures.