Toby Mountain Resigns Conservative Whip

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We heard last night that Toby Mountain, one of the Conservative councillors for Sweyne Park Ward in Rayleigh , has resigned from the Conservative Party Whip under the current leadership of Cllr Terry Cutmore.

It’s been clear for some time that various Conservative councillors in Rayleigh have been unhappy about various issues, and about the lack of discussion on some important topics. Toby was willing to speak up at last Full Council and say he couldn’t support the budget if it meant increasing car parking charges AND abolishing free Saturday afternoon parking.

Toby’s decision means he now becomes an Independent councillor, and the make-up of the council becomes:

Conservatives 30
Lib Dems 4
Greens 2
Rochford District Residents 2
Independent 1

It will be interesting to hear what Toby has to say in the council chamber on each issue.

10 Comments

  1. The Mighty Oz

    I have never understood why, when an MP / Councillor etc decides to change their stance, that there is not an election. After all people, in this case, voted for a Conservative councillor, not an Independant one.

    Reply
  2. Toby Mountain

    In response to this article, I would like to clarify one point… I am still a Conservative! Unless notified otherwise, it is my intention to remain a member of the Conservative Association. As far as I’m aware, I am an ‘Independent Conservative’. I have resigned from the Conservative whip under the current leadership of Cllr Terry Cutmore, because in my opinion, proper discussion around important issues and policies is not being undertaken in a manner which I feel is conducive to a transparent process. By resigning the whip I am now free to challenge decisions, oppose where necessary and vote without fear of any consequences the current Conservative Group may impose. I may now be sitting on the outside looking in, but I still remain a Conservative!

    Reply
  3. Jim Cripps

    Excellent news , at last the dawning of a “Rayleigh Spring” , the sooner we have a
    broad mix of non- aligned Councillors the better, there is no point in employing Councillors who are told what to vote.

    Reply
  4. The Mighty Oz

    Toby,
    My point is this, on the ballot paper did people vote for Toby the Conservative or Toby the Independent Conservative…..

    Reply
  5. The Mighty Oz

    Jim,
    Looking at the numbers it needs to be a very big spring…….

    Reply
  6. Jim Cripps

    Well if the other 7 Tory Councillors were serving the interest of those who elected them ( not the RDC hierarchy) then the voting would get very interesting – not so
    Complacent might benefit the district!!!!!.

    Reply
  7. R.JONES

    Seams to me RDC is a Dictatorship it does not serve the residents of Rayleigh as a whole just the select few (those with money and influence) is it what RDC wants and never mind everybody else.

    Reply
  8. Jim Cripps

    Watching a Look East programme ( More power to the East ) – virtually mimics the scenarios we have with RDC namely :
    No Localism that was promised ( in the Tory manifesto)
    Lack of Democracy ( cabinet system )
    Under- funded Infrastructure from central government ( we are 3rd bottom per capita )
    Myopic pre- occupation with London ( to our cost ) by each and every government

    Told you we needed an Essex Spring – Devolution the way to go , No Brussels / No Westminster / No RDC cabinet…….

    Reply
  9. Christine Paine

    And if the programme had been Look North you would have found northern cities complaining they suffer from lack of funding because of a pre-occupation with London and the South East. That their infrastructure is poor, transport systems outdated etc. etc.

    It isn’t just an Essex spring we need. We need an English spring, some joined up thinking, a realisation that jobs and houses are needed in other parts of the country as well as the South East and that the country does not revolve around London. Given the chance some of the big cities that have lost industry, Manchester, Birmingham, Nottingham, Leeds etc. etc. could become industrial powerhouses again, but they need investment, housing, infrastructure. If some of the effort was diverted there our overcrowded little corner would be much better of in so many ways.

    Reply
  10. Jim Cripps

    SPOT ON Christine , I agree – but we need to start bottom up management not the top down management we have at present , the fact that most Towns and Villages have to have an Action Group because only 9 of 39 councillors have a say – speaks for itself.

    Reply

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