Sunny

Sunny

max temp: 7°C

min temp: 1°C

Search

Stowmarket: Veteran UKIP councillor Frank Whittle to trigger elections as he calls it a day after more than 10 years

08:00 04 March 2014

Frank Whittle is stepping down

Frank Whittle is stepping down

An 80-year-old councillor is standing down as he wants to “get his life back” after serving in Suffolk for more than a decade.

Frank Whittle, a councillor for Stowmarket town and Mid Suffolk district councils for the UK Independence Party (UKIP), is to retire from the two authorities.

He has formally announced his departure from the town council and is due to inform Mid Suffolk this week about his plans.

“I have done 11 years and I’m 80 now; I thought, I wanted my life back,” Mr Whittle said.

“I just feel that I have had enough. I will finish with Mid Suffolk at the end of March, I’ll put my notice in to be handed to Charlie Adan (Mid Suffolk and Babergh councils’ chief executive).

“I was there in 2007/08 as mayor of the town council – that was a busy year – I went to Buckingham Palace twice with the wife and I was the chairman of Mid Suffolk’s licensing committee when the changes came in to the licensing.”

He said he played an active part on the town council during a period when it focused on cutting the number of people drinking in the streets.

But the veteran councillor was criticised in a Mid Suffolk council meeting last year for standing down from a planning committee.

There had been concern his departure from the committee had “penalised” other members. His membership of full council meetings for 2013/14 currently stands at 50%. In January he said that he had been considering his position due to ill health.

A spokeswoman for Mid Suffolk said: “We can confirm that Frank has resigned from the town council.

“If an election is requested by 10 electors from Stowmarket’s North Ward by March 19, then polling would take place on May 22, combined with the European Election. At the moment, there is no resignation from the district council.”

Mr Whittle said he expected to formally leave Mid Suffolk on March 28.

David Blackburn, town clerk for Stowmarket Town Council, said it was the authority’s understanding that Mr Whittle had resigned due to family commitments.

Mr Whittle, who had been a member of the Conservatives since he was a teenager, defected to UKIP in January 2013 over the party’s support for gay marriage.

But he said he had “no worries” that he is set to leave the councils as their only UKIP member.

Mr Whittle was a pub landlord for most of his working career, in Liverpool and Bristol. His last business was The Bull Hotel in Long Melford.

0 comments

Two bungling ram-raiders who managed to impale a truck on a metal bollard outside an Ipswich Co-op have left shop owners fearing a repeat attack.

The original Tolly Cobbold lettering can still be seen on the front of what is now a Tesco Express store in Norwich Road, Ipswich.

An Ipswich man who was awoken by a noise in his flat in the early hours of the morning was confronted by an intruder holding a hammer, a court has heard.

“It’s unbelievable how a whole community can come together to get something moving.”

Ipswich has been dubbed a “cultural wasteland” that needs to improve its music scene and offer more for young people.

The refurbishment of Ipswich station is nearing completion and to mark the we are looking back at the station’s history.

Passengers believe that Greater Anglia’s rail services improved in most areas during 2016 according to a new survey by official watchdog Passenger Focus.

Help can come in all shapes and sizes - but we are not sure if these barn owls are helping or hindering this poor photographer.

A leading heritage charity says the current proposals for the Sizewell C nuclear power station “threaten environmental damage on an unprecedented scale” in east Suffolk.

People looking for a new challenge are being urged to take the plunge and sign up for this year’s Great East Swim.

Most read

Most commented

HOT JOBS

Show Job Lists

Topic pages

Streetlife

Newsletter Sign Up

MyDate24 MyPhotos24