Yesterday Cllr Wilson Hendry (Pinkneys Green) joined the growing ranks of the Conservatives by defecting to the Conservative administration in the Royal Borough of Windsor and Maidenhead.
Cllr Hendry has been a Liberal Democrat Councillor since 1991. He has become increasingly impressed with the direction that the Conservative led council has been going, specifically in relation to the cutting of
council tax and the greater transparency by this Council to the public.
Cllr Wilson Hendry (Con, Pinkneys Green), says:
“This is not a decision that I have taken lightly, but the Conservative led council has an excellent track record locally and have taken bold and decisive steps, such as actually cutting council tax. I believe that it is important that the residents of Pinkneys Green have a strong voice in the Council and by joining the Conservatives I will help to achieve this rather than remaining as a Liberal Democrat.”
Cllr David Burbage (Con, Bray), Leader of the Council, says:
“I am delighted that Cllr Hendry is joining us. He has been an excellent local Councillor for a number a years. His hard work in Pinkneys Green will be a massive asset to us. I look forward to working with him in the months and years to come.”
A couple of thoughts. Firstly, this is a Council which has robust, distinctive Conservative policies. It is interesting that they have attacted a defector by showing the success of this approach – rather than trimming.
Secondly, the dog that didn't bark in the night has been large scale defections around the country of Lib Dem councillors to Labour in protest at the coalition Government. There are 4,300 Lib dem councillors. There have been a couple in Exeter who defected to Labour. There is a Lib Dem councillor in Barnsley who has put out a Focus leaflet asking residents whether or not she should leave. Not much in the way of conviction politics, is it? Why did you join the Labour Party? "I made a principled decision after most of those who could be bothered to send back the feedback section on my Focus leaflet supported the idea."
I think if the number of councillors defecting from Lib Dem to Labour got into triple figures then the coalition might be under pressure – but so far it hasn't even made double figures.