Clerk resigns during council meeting

The clerk of Lancing Parish Council resigned in the middle of a meeting.

Lancing Parish Council clerk Colin Hunt has resigned after a disagreement with a councillor during a meeting
Lancing Parish Council clerk Colin Hunt has resigned after a disagreement with a councillor during a meeting

Colin Hunt ended his eight years as clerk at the full council meeting this month after a disagreement with councillor Geoff Patmore.

The disagreement between Mr Hunt and Mr Patmore was about the design proposals for the skate park at Beach Green, Lancing.

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The issue was originally brought up at a meeting of the Finances and General Purposes Committee, of which Mr Patmore is chairman, on June 15.

According to the draft minutes of this meeting, written by Mr Hunt in his role as clerk, he confirmed that invitations for designers’ proposals ‘were nearing completion and that he expected to release these early in July on his return from leave’.

According to the minutes of the full council meeting on July 6, Mr Patmore expressed his ‘displeasure’ with Mr Hunt that the documents had not been completed.

The minutes state that 
Mr Patmore was ‘displeased that the clerk had not progressed the skate park project’.

This was due to ‘other priorities that had arisen when he returned from leave’.

Mr Patmore then ‘insisted that the clerk give a definite date’ the documents would be ready.

Mr Hunt said he was ‘unable to give such an undertaking and tendered his resignation at this point’.

Speaking to the Herald after the meeting, Mr Hunt said that the delay was because he had prioritised dealing with legal issues arising from an accident at Monks Recreation Ground in Lancing.

He will leave the council on September 30.

Mr Hunt added that since he announced his resignation he had received a lot of support.

“I’ve had an awful lot of emails and letters of support from various quarters,” he said.

“People have stopped me in the streets.

“I want to leave the council with integrity now, that is my big thing.

“I’ve invested a lot of time and effort in Lancing, all I want to do is to leave with my head held high.

“I want to thank all past councillors for their help and support.”

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