Former Tory Council leader joins Liberal Democrats in Lewes

Lewes James Page Catherine Bearder Norman BakerJames Page, Tory leader of Lewes District Council until last month, has left the Conservatives and joined the Liberal Democrats. The council now has 19 Conservatives, 19 Lib Dems, 2 Ukip, and an Independent.

Cllr Page says:

I have become very disillusioned with the Conservative party, and impressed with the approach of the local Lib Dems. The Tory ideology of small state seems to have translated locally to small minds, small ideas and a blind obedience to doctrine and party message. By contrast, the Lib Dems have shown that they are genuinely interested in helping people, improving the district and where appropriate transcending politics to that end.

While the Lib Dems have been open-minded and inclusive, the Tories have been tribal and dismissive of alternative ideas to a destructive degree. This behaviour has predictably just escalated to recent event in the blocking of the Business Rates Scheme and even worse in their total disregard of the sovereignty of Full Council by dismissing some focused activity on flood prevention.

It is in the interests of local people that the district council returns to Lib Dem control who will, I know, if given the opportunity work collaboratively for the good of the district, as demonstrated by the great cross party work in Newhaven that has generated more than £22 million of grants and regeneration activity. I hope my decision to change parties will get us to get back on track and overcome the very recent tribal U-turn. I encourage other Conservatives with similar concerns and a true desire to put residents first to follow suit by crossing the floor.

Sarah Osborne, Lib Dem leader on Lewes District Council welcomed Cllr Page’s decision:

I very much welcome James’s decision. I have always recognised that he wanted to do his best for the district, but it was obvious he was increasingly out of step with the Tory group. By contrast, the Lib Dems will welcome his enthusiasm and commitment.

Local MP Norman Baker agreed:

I am delighted that James is joining us. He has always been an independent thinking person with a desire to do his best for the local area. He will be much more at home in the Lib Dems.

 The Argus reported last December that Cllr Page had stepped down to spend more time with his business and family after two years in the job. It seems that there was much more to unhappiness than he had let on before. Liberal Democrat Councillor Chris Bowers described him as being “of immense value” to the Council, even if he was abrasive.
Read more by .
This entry was posted in News.
Bookmark the web address for this page or use the short url http://ldv.org.uk/38792 for Twitter and emails.

Post a Comment

Lib Dem Voice welcomes comments from everyone but we ask you to be polite, to be on topic and to be who you say you are. You can read our comments policy in full here. Please respect it and all readers of the site.

If you are a member of the party, you can have the Lib Dem Logo appear next to your comments to show this. You must be registered for our forum and can then login on this public site with the same username and password.

Your email is never published. Required fields are marked *

*
*
Please complete the name of this site, Liberal Democrat ...?




Recent Comments

  • User AvatarDavid Evans 21st Oct - 12:38pm
    Dav, the key word is effectively.
  • User AvatarDavid 21st Oct - 12:21pm
    Could there be/is there a list of how many reps each eligible local Party sent to Conference alongside how many they were entitled to send?
  • User AvatarDav 21st Oct - 12:02pm
    Effectively with VAT and other transactional taxes, we’re already doing this No, we're not: VAT is paid by consumers, not by companies.
  • User AvatarRoland 21st Oct - 11:54am
    >Do you really think that we should move to taxing corporate income, not profits? Effectively with VAT and other transactional taxes, we're already doing this.
  • User AvatarMatthew Huntbach 21st Oct - 11:52am
    simon Immigration isn’t the cause of the problem. It is a SYMPTOM. The cause is our loss of national sovereignty. To a failed experiment in...
  • User AvatarDav 21st Oct - 11:44am
    Thesis: An election campaign is like a war. It requires strategy (deciding what messages to push), tactics (how to get them across to the electorate),...