Oakham town councillor Martin Brookes banned from office for two years

Oakham town councillor Martin Brookes
Oakham town councillor Martin Brookes
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A TOWN councillor who displayed an obscene image on an official notice board and abused colleagues online has been disqualified for two years.

Oakham town councillor Martin Brookes, of Willow Crescent, Oakham, was found to have breached his council’s code of conduct by a Local Government Standards Tribunal

A panel heard evidence against Mr Brookes at Leicester Crown Court on August 15 and September 30, and decided to disqualify him from being a member of the town council and any other local authority for two years.

Mr Brookes was found to have breached the council’s code of conduct on six separate occasions between April and June last year.

In May Mr Brookes displayed an offensive image on an official council noticeboard, breaking the board in the process.

He was also found to have shown a lack of respect to council colleagues on various occasions on his online blog.

In one incident he directed “vicious abuse” at the town clerk, according to the panel.

A report released on Wednesday said: “Although the tribunal felt that the treatment of one of the recipients of the respondent’s attacks did not amount to bullying, they went a very long way beyond what can be seen as acceptable behaviour from one person to another, regardless of whether the parties held any public office.

“(The panel) abhors the way the respondent has vilified the town clerk and the way he made remarks, with no attempt to verify the information or to show concern for the individual involved, about a close relative of another of his targets.

“In addition to the repeated failures to show respect to others, the respondent has shown himself unfitted, in other ways, to hold public office.

“There is no indication that the respondent has shown any sign of understanding the standards set by the code of conduct despite his agreeing to follow the provisions of that code.

“The tribunal can see no alternative to disqualifying him from being a member of the town council, and any other local authority.”

The report added the ban would allow the council to “move to a more normal way of operating.”

A further eight allegations against Mr Brookes were dropped.