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latest update 12 March 2010

Thursday, 15 January 2009

Foulkes "deeply regrets" Jim Crabtree email

Wirral Globe by Matt Hurst

LABOUR leader Cllr Steve Foulkes says his group "deeply regrets" the content of an email sent to library campaigner, Jim O'Neill by a party colleague, and has launched a disciplinary investigation.

Bidston Cllr Jim Crabtree responded to Mr O'Neill's email at 2am early Tuesday morning, telling the Hoylake man that he had had enough of receiving his "childish crap" in opposition to the council's strategic asset review.

Cllr Crabtree has since apologised, but now his group leader has weighed in to ensure the ongoing consultation process is seen to be "taken very seriously".

In a full statement, Cllr Steve Foulkes said: "We deeply regret any offence that may have been caused by the comments made in the heat of the moment by an individual Labour councillor to Mr O'Neill.

"The councillor concerned has apologised directly to Mr O'Neill, and this will be the subject of a disciplinary investigation by the chief whip of the Labour Group.

"The consultation around the strategic asset review has at times been very emotive and local councillors have faced a barrage of complaints from the public, frequently in less than temperate language.

"Members have until now done their best to respond in as constructive a manner as possible and pass on any comments they received as part of the consultation process, which they have taken very seriously.

"In this particular case a councillor made the mistake of replying late at night, when he was very tired, to the last of a series of emails from Mr O'Neill, which have included calling councillors traitors and suggesting this is a capital offence.
"He now deeply regrets this action."

Wirral Council's cabinet will meet at 6.15pm tonight (January 15) at Wallasey Town Hall to vote on proposals that would see more than a dozen libraries axed, along with leisure centres and swimming pools across the borough.

Rumours circulating ahead of the meeting suggest three or four facilities may be saved, if only temporarily.

Guinea Gap Baths and Woodchurch Leisure Centre may be given the opportunity to remain open until 2011, but nothing will be decided until tonight.

© copyright Wirral Globe. Reproduced under fair use for the dual purposes of comment and news reporting

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