Arlesey by-election as Gravett quits

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File picture

An Arlesey councillor, whose failed libel action cost the town council more than £13,000, has stepped down.

Arlesey Town Council spent almost £14,000 defending legal action against the then vice chairman Cllr Chris Gravett in 2015 after he was sued for libel by the husband of a former town clerk.

The money was not covered by the council’s insurance, and was paid from the council’s reserves which left residents facing a whopping 17.1% tax rise in the council precept in 2017.

The move brought condemnation from the town’s residents’ association which slammed the rise, and called on the Government to apply rules, which prevent borough councils raising more than 2% without a referendum, to town and parish councils as well.

Would be councillors have until September 28 to put forward their application.