Labour Party Stalwart Barry Stockley Placed Under Administratative Suspension

The Labour Party have placed party stalwart and Chairman of the Stoke-on-Trent CLP under administrative suspension.

The move comes after a series of high profile bust ups in the months leading up to the Local & General Elections.

A number of leading Stoke Central Labour Party activists have since walked out of the party.

The trouble began with the controversial selection of candidates for the local elections, There were then a series of bust ups between officers of Stoke Central CLP and the Labour Party Regional Office West Midlands which included declaring an AGM null and void and the selection of Mick Williams as a “Ëœcandidate in principle’ for the Hartshill & Penkull ward.

The selection was later overturned by the ROWM and a candidate was selection from 2 names chosen by them.

The selection of Tristram Hunt as the Labour Party PPC was also shrouded in controversy.

Gary Elsby, the Secretary of the Stoke Central CLP, left the party in protest at the selection of Mr Hunt and stood against him in the General Election.

The Labour Party appeared to be somewhat vindicated by the results of the Party both locally and nationally.

Locally the Labour Party made 12 gains on Stoke-on-Trent City Council, taking 17 out of the 20 available seats.

In the General Election Tristram Hunt defeated the Lib Dems into 2nd place, the Conservatives into 3rd and the BNP into 4th place. Gary Elsby finished in 7th place with 399 votes.

Barry Stockley today confirmed that he had been suspended and that the party were holding an investigation that could result in a disciplinary hearing. He also said that he has the support of new Stoke-on-Trent Central MP Tristram Hunt and his predecessor Mark Fisher.

Mr Stockley has also been praised for the amount of work he put into the General Election campaign and several ex and current members have appealed that the Regional Office take this into consideration when imposing any punishment or sanctions upon him.

While the suspension is in force Mr Stockley is prevented from holding any office within the Labour Party which could mean he will be unable to put himself forward for the Chair of the CLP at their upcoming AGM.

A spokesperson for the City of Stoke-on-Trent Labour Party confirmed that Mr Stockley was under administrative suspension and that the AGM would take “Ëœplace as soon as possible’ and that it was important to get all members of Stoke-on-Trent CLP to attend the meeting to have their say on the direction that the CLP takes in the future.

It was also confirmed that several CLP members had expressed an interest in standing for office within the party.

Exclusive: Gary Elsby Speaks Out

After 27 years loyal service to the Stoke-on-Trent Central Labour Party, Gary Elsby has decided to stand against the Labour Party’s Official Candidate Tristram Hunt.

His story has been covered extensively on this site over the past 6 months.

It began with his support of Co-Op Party delegate Mick Williams who was refused access to the City Party on the instructions of the Labour Party’s West Midlands Regional Office.

It all ended with his failure to be accepted as a candidate in the forth coming local council elections and his failure to get onto the longlist of candidates for the vacancy for the Prospective Party Candidate for Stoke-on-Trent Central Constituency.

Its all about the process he says, its all about the imposition of the party’s ‘preferred’ candidate, he claims.

The past events, coupled with the selection process, eventually led him to make his controversial decision to stand against Tristram Hunt. A decision that could split the Labour vote and improve the chances for the British National Party’s candidate Simon Darby.

Today we have an exclusive interview with the man himself. We grill Gary on a wide range of subjects. He gives us the reasons behind his decision and the possible ramifications.

The interview is in 4 parts, each part last for around 8 minutes….

Elsby To Stand As An ‘Independent ‘ Labour Candidate For Stoke Central.

Link To BBC Radio 4 Interview Now Online!

Gary Elsby’s 27 year long love affair with the Labour Party is at an end today. He has announced that he will stand as an ‘Independent’ Labour Candidate for Stoke-on-Trent Central.

He made the announcement on BBC Radio 4’s World At One programme.

His decision will come as no surprise to readers of this website as we have been predicting it for the past 2 months.

Elsby was removed from the Labour Party’s Parliamentary list, prevented from standing for the party in the local elections and told that he has no aims and values by the NEC and the Regional Officers. It was widely understood that the Labour Party would have brought further disciplinary action against him after the general election.

This latest saga in the life of Stoke Central CLP will come as a bitter blow to the newly selected Labour candidate Tristram Hunt who won the ballot at last nights hustings by a massive majority.

Local members showed their disdain at the lack of local candidates on the shortlist and a move not to select a candidate was narrowly defeated.

Speaking to Pits n Pots this afternoon Chairman of Stoke-on-Trent Central CLP Barry Stockley said:

“I am terribly upset and sorry that Gary has chosen to go it alone and stand in the forthcoming general election as an Independent candidate.

“I put the blame firmly on the West Midlands Regional Office and I think that it is time for the Regional Director to consider his position.

“I have made my feelings known about the selection and the shortlist. There should have been a greater selection from the broad spectrum of the Labour Party that included local candidates.”

“I don’t want any blame attached to Tristram Hunt for the selection process or the shortlist. I believe he will prove to be a first class candidate and MP for Stoke-on-Trent Central.”

We will have our usual in depth interview with Gary Elsby coming up early next week. This afternoon Gary said:

“By taking this decision I feel that I am doing something positive for all the unpaid Labour Party volunteers who could be the next victims of those paid enforcers of the NEC hit squad. The actions of the regional officers and in particular Regional Director Ian Reilly are to blame for the mess that this has all caused”.

“I want to stand up for Stoke-on-Trent Central and to send the views of the electorate to London instead of London imposing their views on Stoke-on-Trent. I am the natural choice for all those Labour Party supporters who wanted a local candidate to vote for”.

“The Labour Party heavy artillery will now be unleashed upon me. My family are gutted and upset that this decision will almost certainly lead to my expulsion from the party, but they fully support my actions”.

“The people of Stoke-on-Trent Central will know that I am ‘of’ the people and ‘for’ the people rather than being a Lord Mandelson parachuted puppet.”

“Anyone who reads Pits n Pots will have noticed that I have not written anything supportive of Labour since last September. But I want everyone to know that I am out to win this election for the normal decent folk of the area. I did not take this decision lightly”.

“Even if I were to lose I would not regret making a stand against what has gone on here in Stoke, which has been caused solely by outsiders to the City, even though it will cost me my membership of the party that I have supported for many, many years”.

The Names In The Frame – But Beware Of Who Comes Up On The Rails!

Now that the dust is settling on the news that Stoke-on-Trent Central MP Mark Fisher is to step down on health grounds, names are emerging thick and fast for the vacancy

As previously reported on this site City Labour Party Chair Sarah Hill and Election Organiser Jane Heggie were the first names to be linked.

I can reveal that other names that have been linked with the vacancy include Labour Councillors Tom Reynolds and Adrian Knapper.

Another name to be linked is that of Alison Wedgwood, a Labour Party Member and wife of Tom Wedgwood.

Gary Elsby is desperate to be a candidate after 30 years dedicated loyal service to the Labour Party. His timely removal from the parliamentary list has thrown his candidature into serious doubt. He is committed to standing as an MP in the area he has served for many years. It is rumoured that he has the support of a large section of the membership in the constituency. The sad fact is he may have to step outside of his beloved party to achieve this. I think he is totally prepared to do this.

Alison Wedgwood is rather an unknown quantity. She was in Stoke-on-Trent South for a time and is now a member of Stoke-on-Trent Central. My information would lead me to believe that she is not that active a member and does not attend many meetings.

Adrian Knapper is based in Nantwich which will not be a problem for him as far as being a Labour PPC but there are members who question whether he should be allowed to stand as a City Councillor. I don’t think it makes a difference where he lives as long as he’s able to cope with the workload. Some people in Stoke Central are against him because of his time in the EMB and his support for the policies of the previous Elected Mayor. I think people underestimate Adrian, he is ambitious and committed and his suggestion that the long service of Mark Fisher be recognised by the City is both honourable and credible.

Tom Reynolds is a guy I have had a lot of contact with. He is a councillor for the ward in which I live and we have worked together on issues like anti-social behaviour and schools/BSF. Tom is always accessible. He is compassionate and caring and has strong but progressive Labour values. He is extremely well liked in our ward and I think he would make a very capable and hard working MP. He is a guy who has a strong social conscious and would work tirelessly for his constituency. Whether Labour members in Stoke Central hold the same view is an entirely different matter. He would no doubt, through his association with Rob Flello MP, be viewed as one of ‘those West Midlands’ crowd.

Wouldn’t it be positive if all those who have expressed an interest in standing shared their vision for Stoke-on-Trent Central with us through this site. We would welcome their involvement even if they chose to contribute without allowing people to comment on their submissions.

There are also names from outside of the City being linked to this Labour safe seat

The selection criteria is expected to be announced on Friday and it is rumoured that there will be an eventual shortlist of 80% women and 20% men which could mean that by the time the Special Selection Panel, the NEC and the Regional Office have finished with the cull of names, the rank and file membership could be left with the choice of just 4 females and 1 male candidates.

The Labour Party have to act quickly and decisively on this issue. They have to show some sympathy for the views and opinions of the rank and file members in Stoke Central. Why not try and claw some form of respectability back and allow their ‘preferred’ candidates to go up against those that are wanted by core members and work on the old adage of best man/woman wins.

I admit that I would find the prospect of a hustings where Sarah Hill, Jane Heggie, Tom Reynolds and Adrian Knapper went up against the likes of Gary Elsby on a stage answering the same questions in the same pressurised environment.

I have a lot of time for both Tom Reynolds and Gary Elsby and would love to see them go head to head in a hustings. Both love the Labour Party, but both have perhaps a different starting point. Both their own men, Tom the new kid on the block and Gary who has waited for his chance since the early 80’s when he joined the party around the same time as I did.

How intriguing would it be to see Sarah Hill and Jane Heggie vying for the same votes when they both have a similar outlook on the Labour Party, where it is today and which direction it needs to travel in next.

The danger for Labour though is that they are so focused on themselves and their own ambitions that they are in mortal danger of allowing a runner to come up through the pack on the rails.

Whilst Labour are busy jockeying for position, the Conservatives are mounting a confident campaign. Norsheen Bhatti is no also ran. She has the backing of an assured campaigning team and the reports I am getting is that she is getting a very positive reaction.

Another Independent candidate is about to enter the fray in the guise of the Deputy Leader of the City Council, Brian Ward. He is a thoroughly nice guy and a confident speaker who’s key skill is the ability to interact with the electorate. I think he has a real chance of polling very well. Constituents in Blurton speak very highly of him and that appeal could transfer over to Abbey Hulton, Bucknall and Bentilee which are similar areas of social housing.

Of course the far right vote is heading for a split. Alby Walker who is enormously popular in Abbey Green and has a City wide profile will surely take votes off the BNP PPC Simon Darby. Darby disappointed some of the electorate with his no show at the YMCA organised Youth Hustings last week. He also missed a massive opportunity to engage with the young and first time voters. Just how many entrances are there to the Victoria Hall? If only he had contacted the organisers he could have escaped the few protesters that had gathered to greet him.

The Lib Dems will just plod and have no real chance in my opinion. They will mount a very low key campaign that will lack the flash, bang, wallop, needed to make a real impact.

Paul Breeze who failed to retain the Mayoral system when he campaigned against Mike Barnes and Democracy4Stoke is also standing as an Independent.

Matthew Wright is the Candidate for The Trade Unionist and Socialist Coalition.

There will also be a candidate from the National Front who will serve only to fragment the far right vote even further.

Interesting times I’m sure you will agree…..

Exclusive: Labour NEC/Regional Office Suspend Stoke Central Constituency

We have received reports that the Labour Party’s paid enforcers of the NEC along with officers of the Regional Office have this weekend suspended the Constituency of Stoke-on-Trent Central.

This action means that all officers of the constituency are suspended from holding official meetings, but are not suspended from the Party itself. The Regional Officers and NEC have also declared the recent Stoke-on-Trent Central AGM null and void but it is believe that they are yet to give an explanation for this decision.

The membership of Stoke-on-Trent Central will be prevented from holding an official send off for Mark Fisher MP who has decided to step down due to ill health. Any meetings will have to be informal and will not be recognised by the Party.

No action will be taken until after the Council/General elections.

Our information would lead us to believe that this action will allow the Special Selections Panel of the Labour Party to ‘parachute’ a preferred candidate or short list on what is considered as one of the Party’s safest seats.

Stoke-on-Trent Central Chairman Barry Stockley and Secretary Gary Elsby were unavailable for comment and have been placed on notice of possible post election disciplinary action. They are thought to be considering their options in the wake of this latest enforced action.

Previous reports have alluded to the fact that there may well be an all woman shortlist forced by the Party.

City Party Chair Sarah Hill is thought to be interested in the vacancy as is Stoke-on-Trent South Jane Heggie who is also the Campaign Leader for the City Party.

A Labour Party source today told Pits n Pots:

“They may have silenced the dissenting voices through the Party machinery but they will be unable to silence the same voices when the due legal process gains momentum”

Walley & Fisher Among 40 Labour Party MPs Bid To Reclaim Core Values!

I have suspected for a while that some Labour MPs would eventually make a stand to urge the Party to return to it’s traditional values.

In an open letter released yesterday some 40 Labour MPs have urged the party to adopt a range of principles.

Read the letter and then my comments below it

In order to mobilise the maximum number of Labour voters in preparation for the next election, we believe that Labour should now focus its campaigning around the following key principles:

A. The recession should be tackled not with cuts in essential public spending, but by massive public investment in house-building, infrastructure and the de-carbonisation of the economy.

B. Banks should be split up with their casino investment arms hived off. Publicly-owned retail banks should be required to meet new social and community objectives and support manufacturing, with lending to businesses and homeowners restored to 2007 levels. Pay and bonuses should be tightly regulated.

C. A clean break must be made with market fundamentalism ““ deregulation and privatisation. Public provision should be expanded ““ in health care, education, housing, pensions, energy and transport. Royal Mail must remain wholly in the public sector.

D. In the face of huge and unacceptable growth of inequality, a big redistribution programme must swing resources away from the rich to provide sizeable increases in pensions, the minimum wage, the lowest benefit levels, and to fund job creation and improved public services. Union rights must be restored ““ it is in economic crisis that workers are most in need of that protection.

E. To achieve the 80% carbon emission reduction target by 2050, renewable sources of energy should be promoted on a far bigger scale, industry (including airlines) should be required to reduce its climate change emissions by at least 3% per year, household carbon allowances should be introduced, and the UK targets should be fully met by domestic action and not by carbon offsetting abroad.

We also believe that if Labour is to revive its membership in numbers and activity, it must fully restore its internal democratic procedures so that the voice of its individual and affiliated members is listened to and taken account of. This process has begun with the adoption of all-member voting rights for the National Policy Forum.

But we believe that several further reforms are needed, in particular to restore to the elected NEC full supervision and control over the party’s operation and finances, to introduce a charter of members’ rights and a Party Ombudsman to enforce them, and to renew for all party employees the core civil service values of impartiality, integrity, honesty and objectivity in the development of party policy and selection of party candidates.

MP Signatories
Diane Abbott
John Austin
Colin Burgon
Ronnie Campbell
Colin Challen
Michael Clapham
Katy Clark
Harry Cohen
Michael Connarty
Frank Cook
Jeremy Corbyn
Jim Cousins
Jon Cruddas
Ann Cryer
Ian Davidson
David Drew
Bill Etherington
Mark Fisher
Paul Flynn
Neil Gerrard
Fabian Hamilton
Dai Havard
David Heyes
Kelvin Hopkins
Lindsay Hoyle
Brian Iddon
Lynne Jones
Andrew Mackinlay
John McDonnell
Michael Meacher
Alan Meale
Austin Mitchell
Chris Mullin
Gordon Prentice
Ken Purchase
Linda Riordan
Alan Simpson
Marsha Singh
Graham Stringer
Paul Truswell
Joan Walley
David Winnick
Mike Wood

As you can see, 2 of the signatories are Stoke North MP Joan Walley and Stoke Central MP Mark Fisher.

It is the last two paragraphs that are probably the most telling though. I have been getting reports from both inside the City of Stoke-on-Trent and outside that grass root Labour Party members are becoming increasingly angry and frustrated and the ongoing bastardisation of the Party’s rules, aims and core values.

The party is torn apart by continual accusations that certain members are being kept off candidate lists and that all woman short lists are being used as a tool to achieve this aim.

How insulting to the articulate and intelligent ladies of the Labour Party that they are being used in this way and prevented from winning selection by fair means against their male counterparts. Selection should be based solely on ability, no other criteria should be acceptable.

Regional officers are being accused of keeping members who’s faces don’t fit off any candidate lists in favour of those who they have deemed as ‘progressives’.

The party seems as if it wants to ride rough shod over the core beliefs that endeared it to the working masses of a by-gone age.

No longer do the party hierarchy both locally and nationally appear ‘of’ the people. They come across as being ‘over’ the people, which clearly offends the hard working grass roots members who give up their free time to campaign and serve the party they love.

One grass roots member from Lancashire said to me in a recent email that he felt that his local party’s ‘management’ and paid regional officers patronised the hard core party membership and in so doing compromised his basic socialist principles.

The Labour Party membership is at an all time low. The much publicised flawed selection process and regional interference is hardly going to bring new members into the fold. More likely the opposite will be true, members will just drift away because their opinions are not valued and they have no say in the decision making process.

This open letter sends a clear message to the party’s national executive to return the power back to local members at branch level.

It also clearly hits out at those paid regional officers that have been so successful at ostracising the party faithful. The call for the return of ‘impartiality, integrity, honesty and objectivity in the development of party policy and selection of party candidates’, clearly hints at the difficulties witnessed here in Stoke-on-Trent.

Local members that have been victims in the party’s friendly fire incidents will be given heart by the contents of this open letter. Those who are seeking justice through legal challenges will see this as a boost.

While all the in-fighting continues, we are no nearer the announcement of the full candidates list or indeed the policies on which they will fight.

Will those who are working on their own agenda and are set is dissolving local power and imposing their criteria, now rethink their strategy?

No way, their ego’s will not allow it.

Someone, preferably Party Chair Harriet Harman, need to intervene quickly so that the party can return to the battle of defeating the opposition instead of turning on themselves and imploding into oblivion.

You can run but you can’t hide……

I sat in the council chamber on Thursday and observed a united and committed Labour Group Councillors going about their business.

There were inspired contributions by Debra Gratton, Joy Garner, Paul Shotton, Tom Reynolds, Mark Davis, Adrian Knapper and leader Mohammed Pervez.

I am heartened to hear that Labour will also table an alternative budget to the official council version early next year.

The Labour Group seem as if they are getting it together and many will think ‘about time too’.

The hard work and endeavours of the Labour Group is being drastically undermined by the regional office agenda.

These ‘outsiders’ are actively imposing candidates upon the local electorate. Their interference in the constituency of Stoke Central may have widespread ramifications.

I have commented on this blog before that if the officers of the Labour Party in the West Midlands have identified a better calibre of candidate than is available in the wards of Stoke Central then that is fine. If the candidates that have been selected have more of a chance of engaging the electorate then so be it.

But what has actually happened here is that there has been a massive display of arrogance by officers of the Regional Office.

They appear to have marched into Stoke Central with a pre-determined agenda. In an act of true cowardice they have tossed a political grenade into the selection melting pot. They have then retreated and hid behind a barrier of silence. The problem is they are still hiding and are still yet to speak out about their decision and their choices that will come before us, the electorate.

Barry Stockley, Mick Williams and Gary Elsby have had their reasons for not making the candidate’s list communicated to them. But regional office stand accused of double standards and using all woman shortlists to rid the party of the candidates that are seen as trouble makers.

No grass roots member of the Labour Party believe that this is about anything else other than the stand off between Mick Williams and the officers of the regional office over the Co-Op delegate to the City party.

Most members believe that there is no question that Mick Williams should be allowed to take his place in the City Party. Regional office just won’t budge on the issue.

Stockley, Elsby and Crowe are victims of friendly fire according to sources. Terry Crowe of course won his appeal, Barry Stockley is angry and is weighing up his options.
There is a groundswell of support and a possible legal challenge over the decision to exclude Gary Elsby, a man described by the NEC officers overseeing the selection progress as having no political judgement and has no understanding of the aims and values of the party. This, despite the fact that he has been accepted on the MPs’ list. He admitted to swearing on a local blog in a private capacity and although he apologised it has been used against him. Yet a senior local party figure swore at another member at a Labour Party meeting and apologised through the party’s NEC which was accepted. Double standards? – You decide.

Barry Stockley & Mick Williams have had a long history in the politics of this city and to not be selected is not the end of the world. But Gary Elsby is just 49 years old and some one has decided his political carrer is over before it has really started.

As we come to the end of the year and look forward to the elections in 2010, the Labour party is still in turmoil in the Centre of the City. Unless the regional office or someone with the required amount of backbone comes out and makes a statement of the controversial decisions taken and sets out the party’s direction of travel, the only winner is likely to be the BNP.

If the paid regional officials are questioning my interest in this matter, perhaps if they lived in the City they might just realise that in this city the elections both local and general is seen as a two horse race, Labour v The BNP.

If the Labour party spend the early part of 2010 fighting legal actions and the possibility of another party emerging from their ranks, major ground will be lost to their opponents.

If that were to happen the Labour Party could well be finished in this city. Yes I think that it is that serious.

While the Labour Group of councillors are showing unity the grass roots members are showing disdain at the selection process. Many ward selection meeting are being boycotted.

I urge the regional officers and those members of the NEC to come out and communicate with the electorate and if you believe that you have made the right choices then justify them the very people who’s votes you are trying to win.     

MP outraged at Labour Party rejections.

Stoke Central MP Mark Fisher is outraged at the decision to exclude several key Party members from being candidates at the 2010 local elections.

Barry Stockley, Gary Elsby, and Mick Williams have been rejected despite a long and sometimes heated appeal hearing. They must now consider what action to take next. It is expected that there will be an emergency constituency party meeting.

Terry Crowe had been rejected but was successful in his appeal. It is unlikely that he will face the electorate in 2010 as he is determined to support the failed trio.

Stoke Central MP Mark Fisher said that he found the appeals panels decision, “amazingly incomprehensible”.

Talking to Pits’n’Pots today Mr Fisher MP said: “I can not see how the panel have come to their conclusions based on the evidence placed in front of them”.

” Barry Stockley gave 4 out of 5 very strong answers, this was recognised by the panel, so how could he not be considered a suitable candidate”

“Gary Elsby has been accepted on the MPs’ panel list and yet these people deem him to be an unsuitable candidate for councillor”.

“I feel I have no alternative but to take this issue and challenge Harriet Harman to investigate this selection process”

Stoke Central Constituency Chairman Barry Stockley has said that he is incensed by the Regional Office’s interference in the selection process.

He said: “This is all about Regional office’s refusal to accept Mick Williams as the Co-Op delegate on the City Party. The have excluded him for no good reason”

“There are two Stoke Central resolutions against the Regional Office and the City Labour Party”

“The first is condemning their interference in the selection of local candidates for the 2010 local elections. The second is condemning the use of foul and abusive language in a Constituency meeting by City Labour Party Chair Sarah Hill toward another member and her subsequent refusal to offer and apology now, or at anytime in the future”

“We feel that we had no option but to withdraw from the City Labour Party. I think this has had an impact on the way that the Regional officers have dealt with our application to be candidates”

“There are double standard here, Gary Elsby has been refused to go on the candidates list, one of the reasons is that he used foul and abusive language on a web site 2 years ago in a private capacity. Sarah Hill does the same In a Labour Party meeting and gets selected, it’s unbelievable”

Terry Crowe is today considering his position in the Labour Party. He is extremely angry at the treatment of him and his fellow party members by the Regional Office.

He said: “I love the Labour Party and I love the communities of Stoke-on-Trent. I have served both for over 30 years. I am disgusted at how I and others have been treated”.

“One of the things that the appeals panel threw at me is that I don’t understand equal opportunities. I have been disabled for many years, nobody understands equal opportunities better than me. I have campaigned for years for equal opportunities and for people with disabilities”

” I found the panel’s treatment of me insulting and even though I won my appeal I don’t feel in a position to commit to the regional office agenda. They have not got a clue about what is needed for Stoke-on-Trent”

“I resent people from outside coming in and taking over the selection of our candidates”

Gary Elsby has been a Labour member for nearly 30 years and is the Secretary for Stoke Central CLP. He has been told that he does not understand the aims and values of the Labour Party and that he lacks political judgement.

He said: “I am disappointed and hurt but I will have to consider what action to take when we have had a discussion over the proceedings”

“I was grilled for 2 hours and I felt I gave a good account of myself, but I feel that this is about more than the reasons given”

“Everyone who opposed the elected mayor or was a member of Democracy for Stoke has felt the wrath of the Regional Office. I am and will remain a committed Labour Party supporter and I constantly tell people that we will win the general election in 2010″

Mick Williams refused to comment publicly pending his request for written clarification of the reasons for his rejection.

City Party Chair Sarah Hill refutes the allegation that she has not apologised, she said: “I have apologised to the NEC and I understand that apology will be forwarded on to the Chair of Stoke-on-Trent Central”

All four of the rejected party members remain committed to Mark Fisher’s election campaign and all stand by Mick Williams, the man most credited with returning democracy to Stoke-on-Trent with the removal of the mayoral system via D4S.

This matter has already attracted the attention of Labour Party National Executive Member Peter Kenyon who wrote on his website:

“I have already asked whether or not the Labour Party is operating a scorched earth policy in Stoke on Trent. There is mounting evidence of purges being conducted all round the country in the name of the National Executive Committee. The NEC’s so-called representative in Stoke is a trade unionist. He is no longer a member of the NEC. I am starting to question the role of trade union paid officials in the governance of the Labour Party”.

You can read the whole of Peter Kenyon’s article by clicking the link below.