Exclusive: Tory election result letter by Chairman Stephen James to their members
As you know by now, the Tories in Folkestone & Hythe took a battering at the polling stations across the district on 4 May 2023. Within 48 hours the Chairman of the local Folkestone & Hythe Conservative Association, Stephen James (left, pictured with a bully ), wrote to Tory members to apologies for the trouncing. We reproduce the letter in full and provide it in PDF format for you to download at the end of this blog post.
Election Results – Congratulations, Commiserations, and Moving Forward Together
It is with a mix of emotions that I write to you following the District Council elections.
Firstly, I would like to extend my heartfelt congratulations to Clive Goddard, Alan Martin, Jenny Hollingsbee, Liz Grant, and David Godfrey for their successful election to the District Council. I am confident you will represent our Conservative values and principles admirably on the District Council.
However, it is with a heavy heart that I express my commiserations to the candidates who did not secure a win. Some were standing for the first time and will no doubt use this experience to learn and grow, but others have dedicated many years of service to the residents of Folkestone & Hythe, making it one of the best places to live and work in the UK. Elections can be unpredictable, and the results do not reflect or diminish your achievements, so thank you on behalf of my fellow Association Officers and the members of our Association.
There is no hiding from the fact that the election results have been disappointing. This is despite the tireless work of our members, who have given their all in delivering leaflets, knocking on doors, and campaigning with unwavering energy and dedication. I am deeply grateful to everyone who lent their time and energy to these efforts.
While it may be tempting to attribute our recent electoral performance to regional and national trends or to specific local issues or individuals, as Chairman, I acknowledge that the
responsibility for the results ultimately sit with me. I accept this with all humility and offer my apologies to candidates and members.
Like me, many will now be worried about our district being governed by ideologically driven socialists with no regard for the things we love and cherish.
The Labour Councillors of today are a far cry from the “New Labour” of yesteryear. They are driven by a dangerous socialist ideology that continues to idolise figures such as Jeremy Corbyn. In less than 24 hours, they have already made bold statements, tweeting that Folkestone will throw it’s doors open to refugees (illegal immigrants) and shared anti-monarchist sentiments on today of all days.
The Green Party, now the largest group in the council, is determined to pursue a net-zero agenda without considering the associated costs. Their opposition to building houses and Small Modular Reactors (SMRs) at Dungeness further exemplifies their uncompromising and blinkered stance.
We must also not forget that both parties have previously expressed support for open borders and a return to the EU.
What we are going to see now is a whole raft of grandstanding, virtue signaling, and meaningless motions by a district council on issues completely out of their remit. The sole purpose of this will be an attempt to destabilise our Member of Parliament and the government. Therefore, we must prepare for the battle ahead by coming together, recruiting new members, identifying potential activists and rallying behind our Member of Parliament, Damian Collins, as a general election looms.
We must strengthen our resolve and commitment to ensure that we stand strong against ideologies and policies that will harm our communities. Our focus now should be on doing everything we can to ensure that we are ready to meet the battle that lies ahead.
God Save The King.
Folkestone & Hythe Conservative Association
Here it is in PDF Format
Election Results – Congratulations, Commiserations, and Moving Forward Together
The Shepway Vox Team
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What a load of tripe from the Chairman of the Tory’s following their being shown the door on 4th.May.
No acceptance of responsibility that they got their just desserts following Monk’s disastrous policies. They wasted millions on Princes Parade! They lied about buying agricultural land to provide an income stream when the intention was to build Otterpool on prime farmland.
The highest council tax in Kent for twenty years.
The cost of living crisis caused by a Tory Govt.
Did Monks council listen to the voters? No.
Did the voters tell them what they thought of Monks efforts. YES indeed.
Let’s start to put matters right by taking down the Monk hoardings round Princes Parade and put it back to what it was. Also scrap Otterpool and save our area of AONB.
The Chairman’s letter is just a cry of anguish and should be a warning to our invisible MP that his time is nearly up.
God save the King
Well, the electorate has, despite what he says, shown that a majority of them see Stephen James and his set for being the absolute tossers they really are.
Thank God for common sense!
No sour grapes there then!
Oh dear the poor Tories have been found out for all their lies and money wasting .
I can hear them now sobbing and shouting “ it’s not fair “.
Monk has gone now sell his Castle at Westenhanger it was only he that wanted to reside in it.
Be interesting to see how David Wimble the Independent Conservative votes now.
A pathetic letter, still using the threat of Corbyn, who not only doesn’t lead the party, but has been chucked out.
Net-zero is something his own Government have signed up to, or is that just another Tory lie?
More chance of seeing a dodo than our MP in his constituency.
The Conservative Party was well aware of the behaviour of Monk & Co. over issues such as Princes Parade, unrelenting financial irregularities, etc.
They sat back and let him continue, despite the clear and massive level of electorate disapproval.
The Tories only have themselves to blame and if they genuinely didn’t see this coming then they really need to look into what integrity means and how to apply it.
Stone deaf? Love the ideological socialists bit, as if the Tories never where. When Uncle Clive tops the poll, the new leader? Stock up with envelopes.
What will happen to Princes Parade?
Do we put a monument up on the site once the hoardings are down and the wildlife has returned to Monks Folly which has cost us all as local tax payers 🤦♂️
It will be interesting to see how our new council fares. Will they do a lot better or worse?
Let’s not waste any more money on monuments but allow the site to go back to it’s original lovely open space
What a load of B/Schitt . Serving our interests? My Rse ! What’s really needed now is a police investigation into the financial irregularities and the awarding of grants, contracts and payments to companies and cronies. I just wish someone could carry out a Panama paper type investigation and trace the money trail that has been misappropriated and accepted by certain individuals who will no doubt be riding off into the sunset with their I’ll gotten gains .
A lot of sour grapes there, but also the incoming Green and Labour councillors would do well to read it and avoid the virtue signalling and grandstanding which they might just be a little prone to. I fully support a sustainable agenda but they must be prepared to compromise on issues (like SMRs) which clearly offer a sensible solution, and avoid sweeping policies, no matter how “green” or “community focused” or whatever, without listening. They need to change minds by showing in small ways how we can improve our environments and ways of existing, not just change everything and forget that half the people they serve don’t fit their ideologies.
I am really glad the Conservatives have lost in Shepway. They have been a disaster for this town for years, hope new blood will get Folkestone alive again Cheriton is not much better
Thank goodness they have gone. I hope we shall have new exciting plans for the future, we certainly could do with them
Stephen James is clearly deluded. Local government is ultimately about local issues and one is judged by one’s record. I am afraid that history will not be kind to David Monk and his low-grade acolytes or, to Dr Susan Priest and her mediocre colleagues. Their lacklustre performance would have them instantly dismissed if they were working in the private sector.
David Monk and his former colleagues can be thanked for (amongst other things) giving local Council tax payers the highest council tax in Kent; the non-production of statutory accounts; the breakdown in internal financial controls; the proliferation of back-handers/corruption; poor governance and oversight of high value projects; and the reliance on temporary staff – the list goes on and on. Perhaps an apology would be in order assuming that Stephen James has the humility to draft one!
What remains to be seen is whether the new administration is prepared to address these problems. They could start by reviewing the governance of the Council (with its flawed Cabinet model) and then address the under-performance of key Council officers starting with Dr Susan Priest and working down through the ranks.
The new Councillors should realise that Shepway Vox and its readers wants them to manage the affairs of the district in a more competent and professional manner. If they fail to learn the lessons from the disastrous leadership of David Monk and his former colleagues they will only have themselves to blame.