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'Bullied' councillors fear attacks on 'vanity website' - poor dears!

(January 29, 2011)
 WARMINSTER councillors who feel they are suffering a 'form of bullying' have launched an astonishing attack on free speech.
"I have never seen council minutes like it," says Paul Macdonald who took an interest in local politics as a Young Liberal in 1970 and has 40 years' experience.
Warminster Town Council have officially published today (Friday) on their website a response to a complaint from a member of the public a 'diatribe' response from a former Mayor.
It records that 'Councillor Nicklin said that he thought that it was truly despicable when it gets down to personal attacks as is seen in this 'vanity website' that seeks to ridicule each and everyone and is an incitement to to physical violence when individual photos on a website are hatched and and altered'.
"As someone who has suffered criticism at the hands of the author of I took it in the spirit it was intended," adds Paul who is a former councillor and parliamentary candidate and senior official with a national political party.
"In public life one has to listen to a lot of views and then take a decision and when you get it wrong take the flak but this recorded diatribe is totally out of order.
"I took a decision when I was a councillor to back the Rugby Club application for a home at St. George's Field.
"The locals led by Maureen Hiscock objected. They won. I am still on good terms with Maureen and listen to her advice to this day."
The town council minutes state that the author of warminster-web 'secretly takes recordings and then fraudulently edits them into mis-quotes'.
"I was at that meeting and I heard the words. If Cllr. Nicklin would like me to I will admit I was secretly recording his words in written form as I am co-author of another website and a former journalist" says Paul.
Cllr. Nickin was joined by Cllr. Ridout and Cllr. Burden in supporting his claim that this was a vexatious complaint.
"What next from this council!." claims Paul. "Bring the police in to silence the opposition after reading the words that are minuted about incitement to violence.
"I will tonight send an urgent e-mail to Inspector Minty who was at the meeting. I will not be silenced. Let them try!"
"They are elected but not erected into insurmountable walls to public opinion."

Steve Dancey, added: ''I can't recall any evidence of incitement to physical violence in anything I've ever read on Warminster-web - councillors are sounding a bit pathetic in the minutes.

''Actually I was quite surprised to see the minutes on the net so soon. Most well-run councils I attend on a regular basis only post their minutes after they have been ratified.

''But of course they do things differently in Warminster - at the moment - there will have to be some big changes post 2013.''

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