Welcome aboard to Cllr Danny Unwin, a former Leader of the Lib Dems on Mendip District Council in Somerset, who has resigned from that party and joined the Conservatives. Cllr Unwin represents Wells St Thomas ward.
Cllr Unwin says:
“My membership with the Mendip Liberal Democrat group both as deputy leader and leader has become untenable. I have been plagued with internal wrangles within the group over a period of years and feel I can no longer support the group or the party. This has affected my role as a councillor and I therefore have not been able to focus on the issues that matter. This has had a fundamental impact on my health and wellbeing.
“After much consideration I have taken the decision to resign from the Liberal Democrats. Since my resignation from the Party and the Mendip Group, I felt that I had come to a crossroads in my political career. I have taken time out and a holiday to consider my options and to decide my future.”
“My priority is to support my constituency in St. Thomas Ward with my co-councillor Roy Mackenzie. As an Independent Councillor I believe that I would not been able to represent my ward in the way I would wish.
“After much deliberation I have decided to become a member of the Conservative party and join the administration at Mendip. It will be refreshing to work with a group of councillors who are engaged. There are some who will vilify me for the decision I have taken, but my commitment has not changed. I will still work with all, whatever their political persuasion. I intend to return to Mendip on November 2 and focus on the work in hand.”
The Conservative leader of Mendip District Council, Cllr Harvey Siggs said:
“I understand his frustration over the changed approach apparent from the Lib Dems and in the light of his decision to quit the Liberal Democrat Group he has approached me believing he can best serve his people by joining the Conservative Group. I have been happy to support his application and believe he can continue to make the valued contribution to the Council under the Conservative banner.”
This defection increases the Conservative majority on the Council. There are 32 Conservatives to 11 Lib Dems with three for the Green Party and one independent.