POOLE residents have reacted with shock to the surprise removal of a cabinet member and the council leader who sacked her has been called on to resign.
Creekmoor councillor Judy Butt, who until Wednesday was a cabinet member on Borough of Poole, was sacked by council leader Cllr Elaine Atkinson for supporting residents opposing a temporary transit site in her ward above her council-wide responsibilities.
Now Colin Lambert, for 10 years a committee member of Parkstone Bay Association, said Cllr Elaine Atkinson should stand down for her “appalling” treatment of Cllr Butt.
He said Creekmoor councillor Judy Butt had always been helpful and had even helped clear up Whitecliff after a traveller incursion last year.
“I think that the people responsible for her removal from the cabinet should hang their heads in shame. It should be those people responsible who are removed from office,” he said.
“Councillors are meant to support their ward residents. Poole always used to be a democratically run borough. It would seem now that it is running the risk of turning into a dictatorship.”
Peter Steer, secretary of PBA for more than 25 years, said Cllr Butt had assisted, advised and supported the association whenever asked.
“To dismiss her from her cabinet position for supporting the residents of her ward, the very residents who voted her in to represent them on Poole Council, is indefensible,” he said.
Terry Stewart of the Vision for Poole group said Cllr Butt’s dismissal was “terrible” for Poole.
“She has been marvellously supportive of residents (the electorate) on a number of issues, such as the Fields in Trust protection for our parks, the travellers and planning,” he said.
“She is now the 5th councillor to be pushed out of their position by the council leaders, which is a sad sign for democracy in Poole.”
Creekmoor resident John Butler, chairman of UKIP Poole and Mid Dorset, said: “Surely she was only doing her job?”
Disappointment and disgust at decision
Janet Berry, from Creekmoor, said: “I am surprised. She lived nearby and knew the area and the residents.”
Tom Houston said: “I’m very disappointed. She’s a very good councillor. It doesn’t seem very democratic.”
Keith Willard said: I’m disgusted that someone has the authority to sack people for them just doing their job.”