Politician refuses to work with Mayor

This Is Wiltshire: Coun Gary Perkins, right,  has fallen out with Mayor Nick Martin, pictured here in the background Coun Gary Perkins, right, has fallen out with Mayor Nick Martin, pictured here in the background

A LEADING member of the cabinet is to stand in a different ward at May’s local election after a falling out with the Mayor.

Coun Garry Perkins (Con, Shaw) will stand for election in Haydon Wick after what he describes as a ‘breakdown in communication’ with fellow ward councillor Nick Martin.

He says that after attempting to mediate between local residents and Coun Martin over plans to build a skate park in the area the relationship between the pair became unworkable.

The cabinet member for regeneration also said he felt the Mayor should have stepped aside while an investigation was carried out into alleged comments he made about people with learning difficulties.

He said: “The disagreement came about over the proposed skate park in West Swindon and anyone who has been to recent locality meetings will know a bit about it.

“It was Coun Martin’s idea and he was very determined to see it through with some residents feeling they were not being listened to. I feel whatever happens it is the role of a councillor to represent people so I intervened to mediate.

“Coun Martin took exception to this and used words I won’t repeat effectively saying I was a traitor. From there, communication broke down completely.”

Coun Perkins, who is the longest serving member of the cabinet, also voted against the Mayor in a vote of no confidence which was held in December.

He said: “I feel in those circumstances it is important for the person in the seat to step aside while an investigation is being carried out as it begins to have a negative effect on the position.

“It is no comment on whether he is guilty or not but it is something which would happen in most other walks of life.”

After 11 years representing Shaw, Coun Perkins says should he win the election he is looking forward to a fresh challenge. He will be standing for the seat being vacated by Coun Claire Ellis, who will be standing in Old Town.

“If I win I look forward to working in the same ward as the council leader and serving the people of Haydon Wick with the same energy and enthusiasm that I have always done since I was first elected a councillor in Swindon in the 1990s,” said Coun Perkins.

The mayor, whose wife Mary will be standing for the vacated Shaw seat, declined to comment on either the disagreement or the alleged comments.

He said: “I am delighted that a councillor of 12 years’ experience at Toothill and Freshbook has been selected to stand and I congratulate Coun Perkins on being selected for Haydon Wick.”

Comments (6)

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12:47pm Mon 10 Feb 14

Davey Gravey says...

Fair play to Perkins for speaking out. Martin does appear to be a piece of work. I'm staggered that anyone would vote for him.
Fair play to Perkins for speaking out. Martin does appear to be a piece of work. I'm staggered that anyone would vote for him. Davey Gravey

12:52pm Mon 10 Feb 14

Wildwestener says...

Tories under pressure in this ward because of Ridgeway Farm amongst other things. No chance of ever getting my vote again. Any party that thinks Eric Pickles is fit to be in charge of anything will never get my vote.
Tories under pressure in this ward because of Ridgeway Farm amongst other things. No chance of ever getting my vote again. Any party that thinks Eric Pickles is fit to be in charge of anything will never get my vote. Wildwestener

1:04pm Mon 10 Feb 14

stratton man says...

Nice work mayor martin getting the wife on the council will boost your income. Cllr Perkins seems to be a man of principle clearly does not want to associate with someone who makes disgusting comments about people with disabilties
Nice work mayor martin getting the wife on the council will boost your income. Cllr Perkins seems to be a man of principle clearly does not want to associate with someone who makes disgusting comments about people with disabilties stratton man

1:17pm Mon 10 Feb 14

The Artist formally known as Grumpy Old Man says...

Wildwestener wrote:
Tories under pressure in this ward because of Ridgeway Farm amongst other things. No chance of ever getting my vote again. Any party that thinks Eric Pickles is fit to be in charge of anything will never get my vote.
I think the Tories are under pressure in many wards, not just this one.
[quote][p][bold]Wildwestener[/bold] wrote: Tories under pressure in this ward because of Ridgeway Farm amongst other things. No chance of ever getting my vote again. Any party that thinks Eric Pickles is fit to be in charge of anything will never get my vote.[/p][/quote]I think the Tories are under pressure in many wards, not just this one. The Artist formally known as Grumpy Old Man

2:06pm Mon 10 Feb 14

Always Grumpy says...

Well, it could be worse.
Martin could be standing for election in Haydon Wick!
Well, it could be worse. Martin could be standing for election in Haydon Wick! Always Grumpy

3:26pm Mon 10 Feb 14

trolley dolley says...

Don't forget about his other ward councillor Keith Williams who did not bother to stay for the vote at the council meeting.

I understand he had a prior engagement !
Don't forget about his other ward councillor Keith Williams who did not bother to stay for the vote at the council meeting. I understand he had a prior engagement ! trolley dolley

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