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Decision to appoint Conservative to Burntwood Town Council branded “a disgraceful action” by Labour councillor

The decision by members of Burntwood Town Council to choose a Conservative representative to fill a vacant seat has been branded “a disgraceful action” by a Labour rival.

Cllr Norma Bacon

Cllr Norma Bacon

Councillors voted overwhelmingly to choose Cllr Norma Bacon – who also represents Curborough on Lichfield District Council – to fill the vacancy in Chasetown ward.

Labour has accused the Tories of going back on an agreement to allow them to select Rob Birch to take the place as the seat had been held by one of their own representatives, Keith Willis-croft.

Cllr Darren Ennis

Cllr Darren Ennis

But just one Conservative member backed Mr Birch in the vote – a move Cllr Darren Ennis said amounted to nothing more than desperate tactics.

He said: “I was hoping that the integrity of an agreement between two leaders of local political parties would hold up.  It was a sad day for co-operation and working together.

In the council meeting I heard murmurs from the Conservatives that no agreement was made – if that was the case  then why would the Labour party not fight for their seat through an election? Why would we take it for co-option, knowing that if it went to a vote we wouldn’t win?

“The sad truth is an agreement was made and a large proportion of the Conservative councillors decided that keeping the word of their Leader wasn’t important.  And what did they gain from this, really, an increased majority of from 16 to 17.”

Cllr Ennis, who also represents the Chasetown ward said the actions of the Conservative group had undermined the trust between the two groups on Burntwood Town Council.

“This is the most disappointing thing I have seen as a councillor,” he said. “People I have worked close with, people who I have co-operated with for the benefit of the town have used desperate tactics for no gain.

“I would have not had been fussed if they had been honest and said they were going to fight for the seat and made it a fair fight and let the people decide.

“A disgraceful action has happened, but we must move on for the betterment of Burntwood – but this will be done now with sadness and distrust in the back of my mind.”

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Founder of LichfieldLive and editor of the site.


  1. Another 1

    19th May, 2017 at 8:21 am

    An absolute disgrace by the scumbag tories. Go back on a deal, force through this aged, pro-Lichfield woman who has only recently moved back to Bwood, all the while rejecting a more youthful candidate.

    The Town Council refused the right for Chasetown Residents to ask the candidates questions prior to their ballot. Utter disgrace of democracy. I doubt she’ll be giving up her Lichfield district seat, even though she made points of all the “issues” in Chasetown, that she touched on in her statement.

    The Council should represent all the people of this great village. The young, the old, the rich and the poor. And yet, all we get given is old, frail councillors that would never be fit to; come and walk the potholed streets, see the local drug dens, chat to those citizens that can’t make meetings, so on and so on.

    Not once did she mention how she will make life better in Chasetown. Her statement was pretty much “I have experience in Lichfield. I see issues in Chasetown. I think I can help”. No specifics, no examples, and no new ideas.

    So, congrats Chasetown. We’ve been given another old biddy from Lichfield who could did not say how she will help us. Also, congrats to Bwood Council, you’re average age has now gone up to 80-odd.

    For those who do care, Boney Hay has an empty seat. 10 Signatures are needed by the 24th May to call an election.

  2. Toast

    19th May, 2017 at 9:03 am

    Unsurprising news of the day: Tories are snakes.

  3. Steve Norman

    19th May, 2017 at 9:25 am

    I hope Chasetown residents will give the new Town Council Chairman a warm welcome when she and her consort (no he’s not the chauffeur look at his regalia) are on official duties even though she supported a Conservative colleague to represent them on the Town Council even though all Conservative Town Council candidates were rejected by them at the ballot box just two years ago.

    Watch out Pam – no doubt Norma wants to add “Burntwood Town Council Chairman” to her collection of civic offices.

  4. Chasetown

    19th May, 2017 at 9:39 am

    “Just one Conservative backed Mr Birch” – was it a named vote?

  5. 假名

    19th May, 2017 at 11:27 am

    It was not a named vote. Just slips of taxpayer paper.

    However, whomever the honourable Tory was, good for you. You stood by your word, and voted with your opinion, not the whip.

  6. Steve

    19th May, 2017 at 1:07 pm

    Glad to see democracy is not getting in the way of the political parties.

  7. TPainter

    20th May, 2017 at 7:29 am

    Why do we need town, district, parish, county council’s when we are told what to do by government, how can I get on this Gravy Train

  8. Steve

    20th May, 2017 at 9:25 pm

    If there were not so many levels. Some friends and relatives, would not have a role.

  9. Mike

    21st May, 2017 at 12:47 am

    Hasn’t she got enough to do on the District Council?

  10. Andy

    21st May, 2017 at 9:38 am

    Not have a role ? Kinrudedude

  11. The Teach

    5th June, 2017 at 4:48 pm

    Cllr Norma Bacon did not attend a BTC meeting this morning, and did not even send apologies! What a surprise! Parachuted in from Lichfield, feigning interest in Burntwood, AND NOT ATTENDING MEETINGS!!! Citizens of Burntwood deserve better.