Gosport Lib Dem leader banned from council for two years

by Stephen Tall on July 8, 2009

Lib Dem Voice reported last week that Peter Chegwyn, Lib Dem leader on Gosport Council in Hampshire, would this week be facing a standards board tribunal following allegations he used a council vote to protect his music festival. Portsmouth.co.uk reports the result:

Controversial Gosport politician Peter Chegwyn has been banned from being a councillor for two years.
The Lib Dem group leader was ruled to have breached the councillors’ code of conduct after he voted to block a motion relating to his Stokes Bay Festival last year. …

Cllr Chegwyn, who has been a councillor for 26 years, said: ‘I will now have a holiday, frankly Gosport is a very spiteful council and in some ways I’m very well out of it. My conscience is clear. But the Conservatives have been determined to get rid of me for years.’

Peter’s disqualification will trigger a by-election. In the circumstances, you might think the Tories would be looking forward to it, yet they seem to be a little less-than-confident about how they might fare when judged by the electorate at the moment. Apparently their nervousness has something to do with the identity of the Tory MP for Gosport, a certain Sir Peter Viggers, who gained national infamy for his £1,600 expenses claim for a duck island.