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Half of Lichfield District Council’s Cabinet resign after Friarsgate meeting

Half of Lichfield District Council’s Cabinet have resigned.

The decisions of Cllr Doug Pullen, Cllr Iain Eadie and Cllr Andy Smith were made after a meeting of the six-strong Conservative Cabinet last night (June 12).

No official reason was given for the departure, but sources have told LichfieldLive that disagreement over the plan to fund Friarsgate are behind the decisions.

Lichfield District Council House

Lichfield District Council House

The council is currently debating whether or not to spend £49million on the long-awaited redevelopment project.

Cllr Mike Wilcox, leader of Lichfield District Council, said: “It is with regret that I have accepted all three resignations.

“Cllr Eadie, Cllr Smith and Cllr Pullen have each made tremendous strides within their specific portfolios. They have contributed to delivering positive outcomes for our communities, as well as their continued work with officers to help transform and improve the services we deliver.

“I will be announcing their successors within the coming days, and wish Cllrs Eadie, Smith and Pullen well in their continued roles as district councillors for their respective wards.”

Sources within the controlling Conservative group told LichfieldLive that the decisions are related to a fall-out over the funding of the long-awaited Friarsgate project.

Insiders revealed that the group’s leadership had wanted to back a plan to fork out the £49million cost of the scheme after private investment failed to materialise.

But LichfieldLive understands that the wider Conservative group had indicated they were not prepared to push ahead with the project.

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14 Comments

  1. Darryl Godden

    13th June, 2018 at 3:40 pm

    Mike Wilcox continues in his solipsism.

  2. LetsGiveItASpin

    13th June, 2018 at 3:48 pm

    The sad thing here is that there resignations are worthless as it’s clear by the leaders statement it’s full steam ahead … i believe under some powers of legislation it’s possible for a certain percentage of citizens to invoke an election of the full council .. this will be the only way to stop this financial madness by both officers and councillors . They are out of depth , out of time and it’s now time for change at both senior management level and elected members ….

  3. The Teach

    13th June, 2018 at 4:12 pm

    “I really feel that this needs a serious rethink now (and certainly more consultation with residents and businesses), especially as three LDC Cabinet Members have now resigned over this!” “Lichfield District Council Tory controlled Council should not meet in private to discuss spending OUR money on a potential white elephant.” These are just two quotes from signatories to a Petition asking the Conservative Leader of LDC to Launch a proper public consultation into Friarsgate proposals.
    https://www.change.org/p/mike-wilcox-launch-a-proper-public-consultation-into-friarsgate-proposals

  4. AiA

    13th June, 2018 at 4:14 pm

    Interesting to see that younger tories are also finding difficulty in the policies & decisions of their elders.

    Good luck to the band of young whippersnappers for standing up for what is right. I wonder if the other greys will wake up and have some serious input

  5. Dave H

    13th June, 2018 at 4:56 pm

    There is something going on within the inner sanctums of this secret society and I would be very suspicious of what kind of deals are being done behind closed doors. There is obviously something to hide and I question the integrity of those making the deals. I would be looking at getting somebody in quick to mull the books over.

  6. Cllr Rob Birch

    13th June, 2018 at 6:46 pm

    Mike Wilcox should resign as Council Leader with immediate effect. With his insistance on secret meetings behind closed doors, he has turned LDC into something akin to a Masonic Lodge. Under his reign the Council has descended into farce. It now has no credibility and lacks the confidence of the public.

    Clearly the Tories are the party of spend and tax. Spending money that isn’t theirs and then taxing us to the hilt to pay it back. What next will they say we need to pay extra for in order to pay this massive bill they are wanting to burden us with? Pay to walk in the park, a congestion charge to use the city roads or pay to have the recycling bin emptied, take your pick, we have already seen the brown bin tax, much more will be needed for years to come.

    Even though some have resigned their cabinet posts, they should be asking themselves who it was that crowned Cllr Wilcox in his dictatorial position in the first place and which party is it that has presided over this spectacular vanity project?

    Maybe it will be relaunched and rebranded in an attempt to make us think its all been resolved. I can see it now in neon lights “Welcome to Wilcox Square”.

    I could of course be wrong with all the above, but we will never know as they are content to keep the general public in the dark so that they don’t have to explain themselves.

    They just keep on spending and taxing, spending and taxing.

  7. Steve

    13th June, 2018 at 8:11 pm

    Well done them for resigning.

    The only problem is now. Mike Wilcox will make sure, their replacements will agree with every decision he makes.

    So say bye bye to £49 million + interest of your money.

  8. Roy Appleby

    13th June, 2018 at 8:15 pm

    I noticed Cllr Wilcox says he will announce the new successors very soon. I wonder if he had the yes men/women groomed already ? He is a disgrace the way he has handled this debacle. The Lichfield electorate need to get rid of him !!

  9. Roy Appleby

    13th June, 2018 at 8:22 pm

    Cllr Wilcox had the replacements already groomed ready. We need to get him out now before he bankrupts us. Disgraceful !!

  10. Nellygb

    13th June, 2018 at 9:07 pm

    Oh to be a fly on the wall in the fuhrerbunker during his last few days of madness. We can only hope he see’s the error of his ways and falls on his sword with honour…but don’t hold your breath. He along with what seems like a number of others have twenty four livelihood on their hands and the demise of what was a thriving local business all because they are unable to hold their hands up and say that ultimately they got it wrong. Shame on you all!!!

  11. Lorraine

    14th June, 2018 at 8:47 am

    What’s the point of spending 50 million plus on redeveloping a new shopping complex when we in Lichfield have numerous shops that are empty, wouldn’t it be more sense to revamp existing shops and reduce rent and rates to ensure full occupancy, in order to give local businesses a chance to shine in there own city. The 50 million then could be spent on improving our roads around Lichfield, also think about adding more schools and doctors surgery to accommodate the ever growing population Of Lichfield.

  12. Nodge

    14th June, 2018 at 8:55 am

    Cllr Wilcox needs to do the honourable thing and resign. This farce is doing his party colleagues no favours and as Cllr Pullen states, they’re all up for re-election in 10 months’ time.

  13. V. Fairplay

    14th June, 2018 at 9:17 am

    Hear hear Lorraine, high street retail is in decline, we don’t need MORE retail space, or MORE financial demands on the citizens of Lichfield to satisfy what is now a misguided vanity project.

  14. Philip Allso

    14th June, 2018 at 9:31 am

    We really do need a more dynamic council in Lichfield. I went to a meeting recently populated by elderly, over fed, complacent councillors, basking in their unchallengable powers and indifferent to any arguement to the conterary. They have led us, under a cloak of secrecy, to the threshold of financial disaster. Friarsgate is now untennable. The bridges are already burned. It will end up as another expensive housing estate… and palms will have been greased.

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