Pro-Brexit coalition takes control of Hartlepool council as 10 councillors - including council leader - join The Brexit Party
Ten Hartlepool councillors, including the council leader, have defected to join The Brexit Party and agreed to form a pro-Brexit coalition with three local Tories.
At the full meeting of Hartlepool Borough Council on Thursday evening, it was announced a new political group, The Brexit Party and Conservative Coalition, had been formed, comprising 13 councillors.
The group, the largest on the council, replaces the Independent Union and Conservative Group which had previously led the council.
All eight councillors who were previously part of Independent Union group, including council leader Coun Shane Moore, are among those who have joined The Brexit Party.
Coun David Mincher, formerly of UKIP, and Coun Lee Cartwright, previously of the Veterans’ and People’s Party, have also joined the party.
Coun Moore said they moved to join the party as they could not sit by and watch what was happening nationally regarding Brexit.
He said: “It’s something that the group has been discussing for a number of weeks.
“In a town like Hartlepool that overwhelming voted to leave the EU people will be sat watching the events unfolding in Westminster in disbelief.
“What we are seeing is the Labour Party joining forces with the Liberal Democrats and SNP and other remains parties and groups to block Brexit.
“If these parties are going to come together, we will make it clear we will work with other leave voting groups and parties to do the same.
“We feel collectively, as three groups on the council, we want to send a very clear message to the Labour Party and other politicians we won’t sit idly by and allow them to block Brexit.”
He also added on a local level nothing will change and the councillors will continue to give their all for residents in Hartlepool.
Councillors in the coalition: Shane Moore, Lee Cartwright, Tom Cassidy, James Brewer, John Tennant, Tim Fleming, Barbara Ward, Bob Buchan, Tony Richardson, Mike Young (Con), Brenda Loynes (Con), Cameron Stokell (Con) and David Mincher.