Horsham councillor defects to Conservatives after not being re-selected by Lib Dems

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A Horsham councillor has re-joined the Conservatives after not being re-selected by the Liberal Democrats.

Alan Britten, who is chairman of North Horsham Parish Council, was first elected to Horsham District Council in Roffey North in 2015 as a Conservative.

However, in March 2019, two months before the May election, he defected to join the Liberal Democrats and was re-elected in Roffey South.

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Earlier this week the Conservatives announced that Mr Britten had left the Lib Dems and re-joined their party.

Alan Britten, third from left, with Conservative membersAlan Britten, third from left, with Conservative members
Alan Britten, third from left, with Conservative members

He said he was ‘impressed with the success of the Conservative led council and what they have achieved for our district and our town’ and criticised the Lib Dems for being ‘all talk and no action’, adding: “They just moan and kick the Conservatives and never praise the council for all the good work we do.”

Approached for comment by the County Times, the Lib Dems explained that Mr Britten had not been re-approved by them as a candidate for the forthcoming May local election in part due to poor attendance.

Sarah Ullmann, chair of the Horsham Liberal Democrats, said the decision was taken with regret, explaining: “Alongside his district councillor role, Alan also serves as chairman of North Horsham Parish Council. In practice this significantly limited the time he could devote to HDC.

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“We have high expectations of all our Lib Dem councillors and are proud of the efforts that they make on behalf of residents. However, Alan’s average attendance at HDC meetings was less than 50 per cent.

“I’d like to thank Alan for his contribution over the last four years and we wish him well for the future.”

Sam Raby would be standing for re-election in Roffey South in May alongside county councillor Jay Mercer.

Mr Britten is retired after working for Sussex Police and has lived in the town since 1980. He started and is still in charge of the town’s community car scheme, and is the welfare officer for retired police officers in the northern part of the county.

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He believes the Conservatives ‘are passionate about Horsham and having the very best facilities for our town’ and suggested their achievements running the council was ‘endless’ from investing in the town centre at The Forum to West Street, the soon to be upgraded fountain and Horsham Park’s Green Flag award.

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