Posted by: westlancashirerecord | April 16, 2016

Stephenson’s Lurch To Oblivion?

According to Halsall Councillor Stephenson in her amended intouch, the local Labour Party has lurched to the left and they are now “Corbyn’s Men”. She mentions a left wing coup that ousted moderates including Cllr Roger Bell. It’s never a good idea to mention such matters when the pot is calling the kettle black, as in the Cllr D Westley coup that ousted Cllr A Owens, is it?

Why doesn’t she mention that coup? The facts are public, as described in his own words by Adrian Owens who wrote “Last May [2014], I was elected Leader of the Conservative Group on the council by the 27-strong group of councillors in a secret ballot – one person, one vote. Two Conservative councillors wouldn’t accept that decision and immediately set about destabilising the Group. Regretfully, they were aided and abetted by the newly elected Deputy Leader, Councillor Westley who had just lost the Leadership Election. There followed two weeks of scheming and plotting by a few in the Conservative group. Ultimately the two councillors who refused to accept the democratic decision of the Group chose to refuse to vote with their Conservative colleagues when electing the Leader of the Council. At this point the Conservative group’s desire for power won out”. Did Stephenson vote for or against Adrian Owens?

dsfibs[click to enlarge]

It gets worse for Stephenson. She has form, when she shouted at a member of the public at a public meeting. And in September 2015 Stephenson and her husband chose to describe the Halsall Parish Council of which they were both members as having “become a platform for grandstanding and egotistical behaviour”. They quoted “total disrespect for both Borough and County positions which detracts from the main purpose of the council. They now felt their time could be more beneficially spent elsewhere”. This is the complete letter;
From: Doreen Stephenson John Stephenson
To All,
After careful consideration it is with some regret that we find it necessary to tender our resignations’ from Halsall Parish Council. With a combined service of nearly 35 years and the experience and knowledge gained we are unable to continue. Recently the council has become a platform for grandstanding and egotistical behaviour; this combined with the total disrespect for both Borough and County positions detracts from the main purpose of the council. Several members of the public have spoken to us regarding behaviour at parish council meeting, indeed our Parish Vicar, Paul Robinson, who was at the Annual Council Meeting, has expressed his shock and disgust at the behaviour displayed particularly towards CCLR O’ Toole. As the positions are voluntary we feel that our time could be more beneficially spent elsewhere.
Yours Sincerely Doreen & John Stephenson

But who in the Halsall situation was behaving egotistically? Was intellectual overestimation evident in the ward councillor herself by her Halsall public appearances that diminished as her shortcomings were exposed?

Whatever Stephenson thinks of a Labour lurch to the left, and the facts of Cllrs Bell, Dereli, and Oliver leaving the council, so too are Una Atherley, Lucy Hodson, Martin Forshaw, and Rosie Evans. Have they lurched in another direction, or are they simply retiring? It’s hard to imagine that Stephenson will be able to avoid a lurch to oblivion in May, even when a picture of her as a “vision in green” is published too.


  1. Ha! What a laugh. “Your local Conservative Candidate that (should be ‘who’) will represent your views on WLBC”…..What bubble do these people exist in? If elected, she will simply do what she always has done – obey the party whip, do as she is told and not to rock the boat by actually representing her constituents views.

    • It’s a bubble that requires them to obtain power by whatever means and then disregard the electorate.

  2. Why doesn’t Cllr Stephenson put her achievements down in an Annual Report?….OOHH she refused to submit one, or perhaps mention what she had actually done on any working groups on the Parish Council for all those years prior to resigning?…OOHH nothing there either! Is there any mention on her stance regarding the very serious issue of Fracking anywhere in 4 pages of A3….OOHH its a NO again!

    • That’s right, no achievements so no annual report. I’m surprised she takes the councillor allowance!

  3. Some poor stuff here – mind you the Halsall Labour candidate muddied the waters with talk of the EU referendum – obviously she didn’t have enough local material to fill the leaflet. It would be useful to see the whole of this leaflet and if this blog is to be useful to us readers, rather than simply bashing the usual subjects, voters need to send in leaflets from other candidates too to the blog Editor.

    • Your comments are appreciated on my poor stuff…I allow free speech…the leaflet referred to is A3 so I can’t copy it but I will publish it all piece by piece because much of it is political drivel and needs comment. As for the blog being useful to readers and simply bashing the usual subjects, it was created to bash the people who hit elderly and disabled residents by taking away the small but helpful travel concession that enabled them to retain their social inclusion in local society. It was a Westley/Tory budget in 2011 that took away the means to use Dial-A-Ride as cheaply as possible for those most in need. It was replaced for us by the useless NowCard English National Bus Pass, useless because bus companies don’t provide many rural services and isolation occurred very quickly in our outer villages. We tried to tell the then Tory council, they didn’t listen, they created social exclusion of the most needy, and I enjoy rubbing their noses in their own hypocrisy. Perhaps you would do the same in those circumstances? And for your information, the vast majority of the new Stephenson intouch is actually on national issues for the simple reason that it is the national Tory party policy to deliver a programme of austerity.

      • My reference to poor stuff referred to Cllr Stephenson’s leaflet not your commentary. Thank you for publishing more of the leaflet.

      • Ah, thanks for clarifying that, and you are right, it is poor stuff in her leaflet.

  4. Will the “localpoliticswatcher” be keen for all candidates to have an impartial “question time” debate on local issues regarding Halsall? Please contact your leader to initiate this and soon!

    • That’s not going to happen is it, DS will not be exposed to a debate without her minder present?

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