Wannabe MP won’t vote on Gatwick plan

Cllr Liam Marshall-Ascough (Con, Southgate) ENGSUS00120120618131354
Cllr Liam Marshall-Ascough (Con, Southgate) ENGSUS00120120618131354

A councillor with ambitions to be an MP in Stoke-on-Trent has said he will not be voting on the issue of expansion at Gatwick.

Cllr Liam Marshall-Ascough (Con, Southgate) said he did not feel he should speak for the people of his ward on the matter as he had not raised it during his campaign.

He added he would not be attending a Special Council Meeting on January 26 at which his fellow councillors would decide whether to support or oppose a second runway.

Cllr Marshall-Ascough called for a local referendum to be held to allow the people of Crawley to have their say rather than speaking via elected representatives.

He said: “As the issue of the second runway did not feature in mine or my opponent’s campaigns at all, then it stands to reason that I do not have a mandate from the people of Southgate to vote on such an important issue on their behalf.

“If I had campaigned on a platform in favour or against expansion of the airport, then of course I would have a clear mandate.

“Without that mandate I would just be voting on what I thought was right rather than representing my constituents.

“That is why I still hold the firm belief that this important once in a generation decision should be put to the people of Crawley through a referendum.

“That would be the right thing to do and would mean that the people of Crawley have a true say in the future of the airport.”

A council spokesman pointed out the possibility of a referendum had already been voted down at a meeting in September 2013.