Ousted leader blames cuts for election defeat
THE ousted leader of East Cambridgeshire District Council (ECDC) has blamed the government cuts and widespread misinformation for his defeat at Thursday’s district elections.
Cllr Fred Brown said his time as leader was blighted by budget deficits and cut-backs and that he ultimately paid the price for the difficult decisions made by the ruling Conservative group.
Cllr Brown, who was first elected to the district council in 1987, was removed from his seat in Littleport East after the poll results showed his total of 559 votes was short of both fellow Conservative David Ambrose Smith (577) and independent candidate Andy Wright (651).
Despite being left frustrated by the result, Cllr Brown said he wasn’t surprised.
“When I left home to go to the count I told to my wife not to be surprised if it was bad news,” said Cllr Brown.
You may also want to watch:
“Everything went against me on the night and to lose by such a small margin is perhaps more frustrating than losing heavily.
“I have done my very best for the village over the years but there was nothing I could do about all the misinformation that was put out about me being responsible for the government cuts.”
- 1 Off-duty detective snares £200k drug dealer
- 2 Tractor driver error may have caused freight derailment in the Fens
- 3 Mark's 27 unanswered questions over volunteers to control parking
- 4 Independent shop full of fresh food – despite national shortage
- 5 Top Cabinet post for NE Cambs MP Steve Barclay
- 6 ‘High risk’ paedophile had indecent images of children on his phone
- 7 Van driver in ‘life threatening condition’ after crash
- 8 446 catalytic converter thefts in just 8 months reported in Cambridgeshire
- 9 Christmas lights switch-on event cancelled over 'Covid uncertainty'
- 10 County council orders review into £120m lending to This Land
Cllr Brown said he inherited a budget that was overspent by �2 million when first elected leader of the council and budget cuts imposed by central government after that made his job increasingly difficult.
“I think because I was the figurehead people were obviously going to associate me with bad news,” he said.
It was an altogether rosier picture for Cllr Brown’s Conservative colleagues on the night however, as they were returned to power with a majority of 11 seats.
Following the count, East Cambs District Council is now made up of 25 Conservative, 10 Liberal Democrat and four Independent councillors.
The count began in Soham at 10pm, just as the first ballot boxes arrived and then went through the night with last result declared after a close recount at Soham South at 7.05am.