Long Serving Councillor Says He Was Close To Resigning

Cllr Gordon Bilsborough

Cllr Gordon Bilsborough

One of Scilly’s longest serving elected members says he thought about resigning over the way fellow councillor Dr Adrian Davis was treated.

But Cllr Gordon Bilsborough says he’s decided to “soldier on” and represent the people who elected him, adding he “can’t give in and let them get on with it.”

Adrian Davis resigned from the Council last week, even though a legal team from Cornwall found that he had no case to answer after the Council’s Monitoring Officer, Richard Burraston, made a complaint that Cllr Davis had bullied and intimidated him during a meeting.

But Gordon is unhappy that although Adrian was cleared, the Council’s Standards Committee still decided to impose sanctions on him, including having to undergo media training and requiring a third party to be present during meetings with Council officers.

Gordon says that was “an insult.”

And Gordon claims there was “a grim determination” to silence him during the Finance meeting on 1st December, when a report on the outcome of the complaint was brought before members.

Gordon alleged in the meeting that there were two different copies of the report and he says he wanted to ask why. “I was stopped from doing it,” he says.

Cllr Bilsborough claims that transparency in the Council is now worse than when he was first elected in the 90s.

And he says too much is “going on behind closed doors.”

Gordon says “there are things that top management would rather not discuss openly,” and feels there needs to be more cooperation between the leadership team, made up of the chairman, vice chairman and senior officers, and ordinary councillors.

He says the recent decision to hand back the airport lease is a “prime example of wanting to keep everything secret” and the way it was handled was “awful.”

And Gordon says a handful of other councillors feel the same as him.

He feels the way forward is to “keep fighting on” and to fill the four vacant councillor positions. “You can’t just give in,” says Gordon.

10 Responses to Long Serving Councillor Says He Was Close To Resigning

  1. Aged islander December 15, 2015 at 12:14 pm

    So Gordon you signed Adrian’s proposal,and then left him in the lurch by not voting,apologies if I am misinformed,as a consummate politician you always
    Seem to run with the hare and hunt with the hounds.

  2. Pat Hicks December 14, 2015 at 8:23 pm

    Oh wise ones..!! how can we find 4 brave souls to commit themselves to go on the council and be prepared to take flack/or be slaughtered by the almighty public etc… it is certainly not a job for the faint hearted I must say… you must be prepared to take insult after insult from the public..some with alais names… some with true intention some just vicious… I am afraid I would be no good as I am a mere mortal who would be on a very steep learning curve.. and alais would make to many mistakes so would defiantly be on the slaughtered list.. but I respect anyone who is prepared to take the challenge.. as I try to respect all councillors.. enjoy your retirement Dr Davies, you have tried your best and due to personal clashes etc .. it did not quite work out.. I am like you . rather out spoken at times and believe in saying things as they are, which can be taken the wrong way… but I would like to think that the ones that know me,… know where I am coming from !!!.. now I may not know myself but what the heck !!!.. I know I keep harping on about it… but why oh why can people not agree to disagree and be trusting/respectful of each other…
    Would love to wish EVERYONE a Merry Christmas and Health and happiness for 2016 and a ho ho ho .. xx

  3. a local who is not on the council. December 14, 2015 at 8:17 pm

    Actions speak louder then words, but then, some people speak when they have something to say, whilst many speak just because they want to say something.

  4. Snake pliskin December 14, 2015 at 7:41 pm

    Gordon, why must he identify himself? You signed motion to council based on comments left in a story about Steve sims where almost none of the authors were identified. In fact, one of the commenters was ‘snake pliskin’, a fantasy character from an 80s action film.

    Embarrassing mate.

  5. Gordon Bilsborough December 14, 2015 at 5:36 pm

    In reply to Morris who claims that I have resigned “so often before” he should get his facts right. I resigned in 2001 along with two other Members because a of an internal dispute over the method of selection of a committee. I resigned in 2010 because, after supporting an increase in senior officers’ salaries, I found that the majority of the electorate were violently against this decision.

    However, I am 99% certain who you are since I believe we have spoken before on this recent case. So please come clean and identify yourself before giving me any more pious lectures on Council procedures.

    • Morris December 14, 2015 at 8:33 pm


      I think you may have missed one!
      You certainly missed the point, instead of getting balshy with someone who 100% voted for you how about addressing the conduct of the council?
      You claim to be well versed in local authority procedure so get back on your high horse and do something about the ludicrous and inept administration that is crying out for reform.
      Serve your electorate in the chamber and demand that your opinion is heard and that where appropriate your concern is relayed to such bodies that have a duty to hold this council to account.
      You asked for the job, we gave it to you, now get on with it.

      • S. O. Crates December 15, 2015 at 12:03 pm

        As in every democracy – the electors get the politicians they deserve. People in Scilly must have done some really bad things!

  6. Morris December 14, 2015 at 2:14 pm

    You have resigned so often before that such a gesture from you would have negligible impact.
    It would be far better if you were to formally question proceedings when you know that democracy is being circumvented and then require written answers to justify the conduct you consider to be inappropriate. If you are as a result of the answers you recieve satisfied that the code of conduct or due process is being ignored take the matter up with those external bodies that are properly charged with oversight.
    Frankly it is not a matter of choice it is your obligation as a representative of the electorate!

    • Dan Lescott December 15, 2015 at 7:22 am

      Well Morris, you seem to have an opinion so why don’t you stand for council?

      In fact all those regularly bashing the council and councillors should put their names forward. Nobby, Adam, Todd – what about you ?

      • Adam Morton, St.Martins December 15, 2015 at 9:30 am

        Um,apart from the fact I already stood, How can one fail to bring a disreputable Council into disrepute? Its quite a problem! If you say it as it is you will get the Dr Davis treatment. Proper elections are every four years I think . The last seat filled only saw about 500 votes cast which should give you an indication of how important people feel it is. In the meantime some of us have to earn a living, now much harder through the Councils inaction on critical issues such as transport!