Councillor Felt ‘Dishonoured’ During Meeting

Councillor Roy Duncan

An Isles of Scilly Councillor has said he felt dishonoured and insulted at almost being overlooked for the honour of “Father of the House.”

The issue arose during the first Full Council meeting of the new Council year in May, when members elect a new chair of Council.

That part of the meeting is normally chaired by the Council vice chair, at that time Marian Bennett, who could not attend the meeting.

Members were told that the ‘honour’ would pass to the ‘father or mother of the house,’ traditionally the longest serving Councillor. That is currently Roy Duncan.

But Amanda Martin nominated Dudley Mumford and this was seconded by Gordon Bilsborough. Christine Savill quickly nominated Roy, and, possibly realising the mistake, Dudley withdrew his nomination.

Roy was seconded by Amanda, who apologised saying she had misunderstood.

Councillor Duncan went on to chair the item.

But the issue arose again at last Thursday’s Full Council meeting, when Roy challenged the minutes, saying they missed out the first nomination of Dudley.

Roy said, “I did ponder as to why those members did not want me to take that item but it’s not up to me to speculate.”

He acknowledged that Amanda and Gordon could have thought Dudley was the father of the house, but added it would seem odd for the two Councillors to get it wrong as they, “are almost infamous for being pedantic.”

Amanda said she didn’t realise he was the longest serving Councillor and admitted she had committed a ‘faux pas.’ She said she can only apologise for any offence caused and none was intended.

Mike Hicks also extended his apology as chair of the Council.


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