Another Tory
resigns to join

Cllr. Anne Mellor who is resigning from Conservative party.'MHLC-17-09-13 anne sep52
Cllr. Anne Mellor who is resigning from Conservative party.'MHLC-17-09-13 anne sep52

A second Conservative 
district councillor has resigned from the party and will cross the floor to join the Independents.

Former Warwick mayor Anne Mellor - who polled one of the highest numbers of votes during the last district council election - said: “I don’t think Warwick people are being listened to.

“I can stand up for the town better by being free of the party whip and voting with my conscience.”

Cllr Mellor, who lives in Warwick Gates and has represented Warwick South for the past nine years - will now join Cllr Linda Bromley on the Independents’ bench.

Both women secured the second and third highest number of votes for the Tories during the 2011 election. And both have linked their resignations to issues including the Local Plan, which could lead to 4,500 new homes being built south of Warwick - and St Mary’s Lands.

With their defection, and the temporary suspension from the party of Cllr Bob Dhillon, the current mayor of Warwick, the Conservative majority on the district council is down to just two.

Last month Cllr Dhillon was suspended for six months amid allegations he tried to intimidate council officers over the St Mary’s Lands issue. But last week he was greeted with applause by fellow town councillors.

Racecourse managers and The Jockey Club have suggested the course could go if it does not make more of a profit at its 24 meetings a year. They argue a hotel - rejected last year - would bring in extra revenue.

But Cllr Mellor says, who’s also been on the town council since 2003, said: “Threats of the racecourse closing seem to me to be a form of bullying.

“Residents in Warwick do not want a hotel at the entrance to the racecourse which is the worst possible location. Quite apart from the fact that the course is on publicly-owned recreation land. And people don’t want thousands of new homes being built on what is currently arable land.

“So many of us on the town council feel disheartened by the way we keep raising our objections to represent our constituents but we are simply not being listened to.

“Instead the council will spend money on consultations - often the town council’s money - when we are the people on the ground who know what local residents are saying.”