13th May, 2021

Pair cleared over alleged breach of Covid restrictions at Bromsgrove Council meeting

Tristan Harris 4th Dec, 2020 Updated: 9th Dec, 2020

SENIOR members at Bromsgrove District Council who were accused of breaching Tier 2 restrictions have been cleared after West Mercia Police and Worcestershire Regulatory Services said there was no case to answer.

During a virtual council meeting last Wednesday on Zoom it became apparent Conservative councillors Rod Laight and Shirley Webb were in the same house when they appeared on each other’s screens.

As well as being in the same property they were criticised for sharing equipment, not wearing masks and not socially distancing.

Coun Webb said the pair were in a support bubble for their work together for the Primrose Hospice and the scouts.

After a near 30 minute adjournment, the authority’s head of legal, Claire Felton, announced that vice chairman Coun Andrew Beaumont would preside over the rest of the meeting.

But on Tuesday, it was confirmed they had done nothing wrong.

In a joint statement, Coun Laight and Coun Webb said: “We understand that the information being circulated on social media and in the press about this matter is causing upset to people and we wish to apologise for that.

“We take very seriously the restrictions that have been placed on us all and we understand our responsibilities.

“We wish to reassure people that we are abiding by those restrictions and we are doing all we can to help stop the spread of the virus, whilst also ensuring that the business of the council can continue.

“We have been assured by both Worcester Regulatory Services and the Police that our actions complied with the Rules, given the exemptions in place for carrying out necessary activities for work purposes.

“We are disappointed that some councillors have chosen to distort the matter, use up valuable police time and cause disruption to the business of the council.

“We will continue to work hard for all the residents of Bromsgrove, including all the fantastic work currently underway to roll out the covid-19 vaccination.”

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