Dulcie’s coalition with Tories offers ‘best result’ for voters
Dulcie Tudor has joined forces with the Tories
26th May 2021
By Juliet Lunam
It’s all change at Cornwall Council as the shuffling of leadership positions takes place following the local elections.
And in a surprise move, a Truro independent councillor has joined forces with the Conservatives in an attempt to ensure promises she made to people in her ward are kept.
Dulcie Tudor – who already left the Lib Dems to become Independent last year – has now ditched the Independent group to become ‘non-aligned’.
And within hours of her decision, she was offered the chance to form a coalition with the Tories.
Cllr Tudor, who represents Threemilestone and Chacewater, said she was left with no choice after fighting four years for £6 million of funding for projects in Threemilestone.
“I have chosen to enter into a coalition with the Conservative Group to get the best result for the people living in my division, and the people who will be living in Langarth Garden Village,” she said. “I spent the last four years under a Lib Dem/Independent coalition excluded from meetings and decisions affecting my division. I look forward to closer, more inclusive working relationship with the new administration where, as an elected member I am able to put Threemilestone and Chacewater first.”
Cllr Tudor said becoming part of a coalition meant she would be entitled to attend all the meetings about Langarth and Threemilestone.
“It’s one of me and 47 Conservatives,” she added. “It’s not my personal politics but it is the best option for the people in my area. If there had been a big backlash I would have reversed my decision but I felt I had to form a working relationship, especially as the Tories are reviewing the plans for the Langarth Garden Village housing development.
“The thought of losing the projects I have secured and promised for Threemilestone, like the new school hall, the football pitches and the super crossing meant I had to be around the table.
“I just want to get stuff delivered for the community I’m a councillor for.”
Cllr Linda Taylor, Leader of the Conservative Group on Cornwall Council and now Cornwall Council leader said her group is open to working with others.
She said: “There are talented councillors from across the political spectrum at county hall.
“Cllr Dulcie Tudor was poorly treated by former colleagues under the previous administration. This was shameful. As a new administration, we look forward to working with Cllr Tudor as we start to fulfil the commitments in our Plan for Cornwall. I am proud the Conservatives have always shown the ability to maintain an open and honest dialogue with all elected members, ultimately at the end of the day we all want the best for the residents of Cornwall.”
The Conservative group took control of the council after it won 47 of the 87 seats in the recent elections.
Conservative group leader Linda Taylor will be leader of the council with David Harris her deputy.
Loic Rich, councillor for Truro Tregolls, is the new leader of the Independent group in place of former group leader Carolyn Rule who lost her seat.
And the new deputy leader is Adam Paynter, former deputy leader of the council and former leader of the Liberal Democrat.
Cllr Paynter stood as an independent in the recent election after being suspended from the Lib Dems following an investigation over allegations he shared a confidential email. He is currently appealing the findings.
Cllr Rich said as the second largest group on the council the Independents would be providing ‘a constructive challenge’ to the Conservatives in charge.
He added: “We will also be offering support where appropriate. We are all elected as independent councillors by our communities, free of party politics. But where we come together is to promote our values for the good of all in Cornwall.”
The Liberal Democrat group has announced new leadership following the elections with Edwina Hannaford now leading the group, which has 13 councillors. Her deputy is Colin Martin.
The Labour group also has a new leader in Jayne Kirkham with Stephen Barnes as deputy.
And the Mebyon Kernow group, which has welcomed Green councillor Tamsyn Widdon, will continue to be led by Dick Cole with Andrew Long as his deputy.