As is now becoming customary the last Borough Council meeting had a strong febrile focus on the case of the missing Lincolnshire Tory Councillors ; except on this occasion they were not missing and Mr Willicombe did make a contribution to one debate.
Regular attendance at Council meetings is part of the representative role of all Councillors. Yet another aspect of Tory Councillor involvement was robustly raised at this meeting.
Towards the end of the meeting, Labour Councillor Martin McCusker spoke directly to the ranks of Tory backbenchers. Somewhat rhetorically he said he knew that they would not be voting for the Labour motion on the Living Wage. But, he added, he would never know the rational reason for their vote because so many of them never speak.
There are some who year on year sit on the Tory benches and never speak on behalf of their constituents.
The following evening the Council Scrutiny panel met to ask pertinent questions about the proposed budget for 2014-2015. Once again Tory members on the panel sat in silence. At one point Labour Chairman Ghlin Whelan asked them directly, one by one, if they had any questions. They had none. Nearly all the questions asked at the meeting came from visiting members of the Labour Party and from the Independent Group.
There is a palpable issue about the Councillors who now live in Lincolnshire. There is a more subtle question. Do the constituents of these Trappist Tory Councillors know that their elected representatives do no more than vote to order in the Swale Council Chamber?