Brown awarded council top role

LITTLEPORT Tory councillor, Fred Brown, who was cleared of assaulting a teenager he caught vandalising his business, has been awarded a top seat on East Cambridgeshire District Council. Cllr Brown was elected council chairman on Tuesday when councillors a

LITTLEPORT Tory councillor, Fred Brown, who was cleared of assaulting a teenager he caught vandalising his business, has been awarded a top seat on East Cambridgeshire District Council.

Cllr Brown was elected council chairman on Tuesday when councillors attended their annual meeting.

He takes over the role from former Ely West Cllr Richard Hobbs, who lost his seat at the recent district council elections.

Cllr Brown, who represents Littleport East and also sits on the village's parish council, made headlines last month when he appeared before magistrates and was cleared of common assault.


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The court was told that he had slapped a teenager who spat at his wife and was about to lash out at him.

A wave of public support followed his court appearance and Cllr Brown was overwhelmed as residents congratulated him for standing up to 15-year-old Luke Rainford.

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One well-wisher even highlighted his case in a letter to Prime Minister Tony Blair.

Cllr Brown, who has represented Littleport for 25 years, said of his new role: "This is the icing on the cake. I was surprised but I was also saddened by the fact that Richard lost his seat. He was a wonderful fellow."

He added that, after his court case, it was nice to come through the other side and "look forward to something".

"We want to carry forward the commitment we gave to the electorate that we will encourage business and retail development in Ely and try to keep employment as local as we can," he said.

Council leader Cllr Brian Ashton said: "I am absolutely delighted that Cllr Brown has been elected to the chair of the council and I am sure he will carry out his official duties with enthusiasm and charm.

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