The leader of Rushcliffe Borough Council has called on two councillors to “do the right thing” by going back to the electorate after they were expelled from the Conservative Party following bullying allegations.
Bingham Town councillors John Stockton, who represents Bingham west alongside councillor Francis Purdue-Horan, were both found to have breached the town council’s member code of conduct, Rushcliffe Borough Council’s Standards Committee concluded.
It had been alleged both councillors had “bullied the [Bingham] Town Clerk over a sustained period with the object of removing her from office” and “harassed and repeatedly behaved unfairly and oppressively” towards her.
Revelations began to become visible earlier this year when a petition, backed by hundreds of people, called for Bingham Town Council to be dissolved and the town to be governed by Rushcliffe Borough Council.
It was said at the time the council lacked performance and was “dysfunctional”.
Over time the alleged toxic culture became ever-more apparent.
Conservative leader of the borough council, Simon Robinson, brought forward a recommendation that his authority impose an improvement board at the Tory-led Bingham Town Council.
Now councillor Robinson says both councillors have since been expelled from the party.
He said: “After a formal hearing of the Newark Conservative Association, both councillor Stockwood and Purdue-Horan were expelled from the party for a minimum period of 5 years.
“This is following their conduct as councillors at Bingham Town Council and the findings of a Standards Committee Investigation carried out by the Borough earlier this year.
“I hope both individuals will now do the right thing and go back to the electorate in a by- election as both Councillors were elected as representatives of the Conservative Party, which is not the case now.
“Voters should have the opportunity to vote in two new councillors who represent the Conservative Party.”
The councillors were contacted by Nottinghamshire Live but only councillor Purdue-Horan had responded in time for publication.
He said: “The Rushcliffe Borough Council Standards Committee did not find me or my colleague in breach of the Town Council Code of Conduct for bullying or harassment.
“I have been advised not to comment on the decision by the Newark Conservative Association Executive Committee to expel me for five years from the Conservative Party, except to confirm that I will be appealing the decision to the national Conservative Party Membership Committee.”