Mayor of Thetford resigns from Labour group

Mark Westley Photography'Thetford Mayor Sylvia Armes ANL-140705-202543009
Mark Westley Photography'Thetford Mayor Sylvia Armes ANL-140705-202543009
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A councillor has denied claims she left the Breckland Council Labour group after not being reselected for her seat in a recent election.

Sylvia Armes, councillor for Thetford Saxon ward, said she will continue as an independent councillor and not call an election for her seat before the General Election next May.

Cllr Armes said: “It is the Breckland Labour group I have stood back from. We had a difference of opinion.”

Cllr Armes, also a Thetford town councillor and currently serving as mayor, said she was unwilling to call for an election in her seat due to the considerable cost to the taxpayer and the short amount of time until the council elections next year.

“I will not saddle people with that added burden,” she said.

Fellow Saxon ward councillor and Labour group leader Terry Jermy said: “Sylvia’s resignation was caused by a number of things, but I think the defining factor was that she was not reselected for the seat she wanted.

“She was quite aggrieved about it and that was the final straw.”

However, Cllr Armes denies this assessment of her resignation.

“The election happened weeks ago so it was not related to that,” she said.

When asked about grievances within the Labour group Cllr Jermy said: “There were issues, but there are always issues within a group.”

Cllr Jermy said Cllr Armes had expressed issues with him as leader, but when asked she denied this as a reason for her leaving the group.

Cllr Armes’ resignation means the Labour group loses its position as majority opposition party within Breckland Council.

It now has three members, the same number of Independents on the council.