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‘The reasons why I quit as Mayor’

 
Created on 04/05/2021 @ 12:43

 

It will go down in local history as one of the shortest terms of office for a Welshpool mayor, but David Senior has finally revealed why he felt he had no choice but to quit after just five months.

Mr Senior has issued a full statement to MyWelshpool to make his position clear, and has blamed some fellow councillors for being “more concerned with controlling every decision made by the council than they were about actually achieving anything positive for the town”.

He has confirmed that he will share his concerns with the Public Services Ombudsman after alleging that “there is a continuing probability of bullying behaviour towards councillors and employees”.

When he quit his post, Welshpool Town Council declined an opportunity to make a statement and said Mr Senior resigned due to “personal reasons” and that he should be asked as to why.

We have asked Welshpool Town Council for a response to his claims.

The full statement by David Senior

When I became Mayor of Welshpool, I considered it to be a great honour. I hoped to work towards healing some of the rifts within the Town Council, develop the Town Council’s

Environmental Policy, and work towards restoring some of the services that we had been forced to cancel, or reduce such as the Skate Park.

I gave up my full-time work to concentrate on this as I felt that it was of such importance to the town.

I never expected to spend quite so much of my time umpiring constant petty arguments about which committee should discuss a particular issue, whether there was a minor mistake in the minutes, derogatory comments about other organisations and people, breaches of confidentiality by certain councillors, and verbal aggression towards fellow councillors. What became clear was that certain councillors were more concerned with controlling every decision made by the council than they were about actually achieving anything positive for the Town.

It is worth emphasising that this does not apply to most of the council and is not a criticism of the previous Mayor (Cllr Steve Kaye) who ably lead the council through a very difficult time and for whom I have utter respect.

Unfortunately, the situation culminated in a serious breach of the code of conduct by certain councillors. When faced with the fact that they had breached the code of conduct and were then offered the opportunity to apologise to the person they had targeted, they refused.

The actions of these councillors went against professional advice and may have left the council open to litigation.

There is no doubt in my mind that while this situation continues to exist on the Town Council, there is a continuing probability of bullying behaviour towards councillors and employees.

As such I am passing on my concerns to the Public Services Ombudsman so that a proper investigation can take place and appropriate action be taken.

It was a very difficult decision for me to resign as Mayor, but I genuinely felt that the effective working of the Council was being completely prevented by the actions of a small group. The financial loss to my family and the fact that it was effecting my health meant that I felt I had no choice but resign.

I wish all the best to Alison Davies (Deputy Mayor). I know that her ability and integrity will serve the town well. I also wish my best to the majority of councillors who have acted honourably throughout the years that I have been a member of the council.


 

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