Town council leader Sam Hoy dismisses seating row as ‘no big deal’ but opposition councillor Alan Lay felt it ‘a beautiful thing’

PUBLISHED: 10:42 25 April 2017 | UPDATED: 10:42 25 April 2017

The scene at Wisbech town council on Monday when UKIP councillor Alan Lay sat down in a seat normally occupied by majority Conservative councillors. His one man protest was disissed as 'no big deal' by the council leader Sam Hoy.

The scene at Wisbech town council on Monday when UKIP councillor Alan Lay sat down in a seat normally occupied by majority Conservative councillors. His one man protest was disissed as 'no big deal' by the council leader Sam Hoy.

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Town council leader Sam Hoy dismissed a fellow councillor’s protest over where members should sit as “no big deal”.

The scene at Wisbech town council on Monday when UKIP councillor Alan Lay sat down in a seat normally occupied by majority Conservative councillors. His one man protest was disissed as 'no big deal' by the council leader Sam Hoy. The scene at Wisbech town council on Monday when UKIP councillor Alan Lay sat down in a seat normally occupied by majority Conservative councillors. His one man protest was disissed as 'no big deal' by the council leader Sam Hoy.

She was responding to the early arrival at Wisbech council chamber on Monday when UKIP councillor Alan Lay plonked himself down 30 minutes early in a seat normally occupied by majority Conservative councillors.

Cllr Lay claimed the protest was staged to try and end politics in the chamber and he believes if everyone sat down where they liked this could make a difference.

“At parish meetings there should be no designated seating,” he said. “At other parish meetings I’ve attended as a county councillor people normally sit where they like.”

Cllr Hoy said in her seven years on Wisbech town council the opposition had always sat opposite the majority Conservative group.

The scene at Wisbech town council on Monday when UKIP councillor Alan Lay sat down in a seat normally occupied by majority Conservative councillors. His one man protest was disissed as 'no big deal' by the council leader Sam Hoy. The scene at Wisbech town council on Monday when UKIP councillor Alan Lay sat down in a seat normally occupied by majority Conservative councillors. His one man protest was disissed as 'no big deal' by the council leader Sam Hoy.

“It’s always been like that – it’s only in the past few months some seemed keen to challenge it,” she said.

She claimed it was having the reverse affect and making political life in Wisbech even more divisive.

“When it is all going to end?” she said.

Cllr Hoy said that Cllr Lay’s manoeuvre was “no big deal – he wanted to have his protest at the meeting and that’s it. People are trying to make more of it but in reality we just sat down and had our meeting”.

Cllr Lay, however, was delighted at the outcome and “it was beautiful seeing children playing games and deciding who could be king of the castle”.

He said other councillors had got wind of his protest, turning up half an hour before the start but he was one of the first still to arrive.

“Not one person from the opposition spoke although some glared – it was lovely,” he said.

4 comments

  • It's a great pity Cllr Lay couldn't spend his time more productively. He receives a lot of expenses as a County Councillor so perhaps carrying out those duties might be a start. I am so relieved to learn he is not standing for the County Division again. A wasted 4 years.

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    Robert Smith

    Thursday, April 27, 2017

  • As far as I can ascertain the seating arrangements in the Council Chamber are majority party on one side and opposition Councillors on the other. Name plates are laid out before meetings as can be seen in the pictures. Whether the Town Council should be split along party lines is a different debate. What is clear, is that there is a procedure in place and if a Councillor(s) want to challenge the seating arrangements they should raise it with a properly worded motion and have it discussed within the chamber. Alan Lay got a lot of support from people by the way he acted in his dignified defence of his wife's exclusion from the Council because of access difficulties.However this puerile behaviour will have lost a lot of respect from those people, and also given his opponents on the Council more ammunition in their campaign against him.

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    contramundum

    Wednesday, April 26, 2017

  • Councillor Alan Lay felt it ‘a beautiful thing’ did he? What sort of man (obviously making a point) occupies a lady's seat and gets pleasure from it? Not the sort of man I expect a councillor to be, that's for sure.

    Report this comment

    A Wisbech Voice

    Wednesday, April 26, 2017

  • Somebody sat in a different chair. Nobody cared. Cutting edge news, right there. :)

    Report this comment

    Steve Tierney

    Tuesday, April 25, 2017

The views expressed in the above comments do not necessarily reflect the views of this site

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