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Ludlow Town Council to take action against outspoken Leyton-Purrier
1:22pm Wednesday 4th April 2012 in Ludlow
ACTION is being taken against a councillor for allegedly speaking to the press inappropriately.
Ludlow Town Council met in private and decided to instigate disciplinary action against Jennifer Leyton-Purrier for an alleged breach of a press protocol and bringing the council into disrepute.
The council has reported her to the standards monitoring officer at Shropshire Council.
Mrs Leyton-Purrier is in hot water specifically because of comments she has made about the future of The Buttercross including a suggestion it could be converted to house a luxury public convenience.
The council believes her remarks could jeopardise a bid for £1.9 million from the Heritage Lottery Fund which it is claimed could create or protect approaching 100 jobs in Ludlow.
The Gallows Bank member has has never been far from controversy since being elected in September 2010.
She has faced criticism for her attendance record andcalled for town councillors to be paid while also demanded cuts in council spending including the sale of buildings like The Buttercross and Guild Hall.
She wants to see a publically elected mayor for both the town council and Shropshire council.
“I am sorry if my remarks about the Buttercross offended anyone but there is a fundamental right of free speech that applies to individuals and councillors alike,” She said.
“My first duty is to the people that elected me. I have always made it clear that my views are my own and have never claimed to speak on behalf of the council.”
The councillor for Gallows Bank says that she is also concerned about the amount of council business that is conducted behind closed doors.
Since the beginning of February the town council and its committees have met on five occasions in private with the public and press excluded.
Veronica Calderbank, Ludlow’s town clerk said any press protocol was nothing to do with either stifling freedom of speech or gagging councillors.
“There are very few matters discussed in closed session.
They are to protect individuals or commercially sensitive information.”