FOLLOWING your publication of my letter in October in which I advised your readership that the new intake of Labour Councillors on Winsford Town Council had refused to award the £2,000 provided annually by the Council Grants committee to the ‘Churches together group’ – which is to help them assist the poorest and most vulnerable people in the community – the Labour group claimed an Act of Parliament passed in 1894 prevented such donations.

The resulting publicity following your publication of the letter resulted in a certain amount of verbal abuse from this group of councillors culminating in four of them surrounding and harassing me in the council chamber after the November meeting in a pathetic attempt to make me retract my letter.

They stated I was not allowed to write such letters to the Press!

A few on-lookers still in the council chamber alarmed by what they saw described their conduct as harassment and bullying and as such thought it should be reported to the proper authority, the Cheshire West and Chester Monitoring Officer.

However, since I did not feel in the least bit intimidated or threatened, I have not reported the incident.

The Grants committee have now had a drastic rethink and have announced they will be giving funding to the church group after all.

This Labour Group should also be aware that many Labour members and supporters, few, if any of them church goers or followers of any particular religion, have contacted me personally to express their disgust at the original meanminded, politically motivated decision. Not least because the Localities Act, passed in 2015, states that churches can receive funds from local councils.

Councillor Malcolm Gaskill Cheshire West and Chester Council and Winsford Town Council for Winsford Swanlow