Councillor to step down after 20 years
AN OUTSPOKEN council veteran says he won't miss the Town Hall at all when he steps down after 20 years to care for his sick wife.
Councillor Lionel Lee, who represents Shenfield, will leave Brentwood Borough Council on the day of the next full council meeting on October 24, at the latest.
His wife of 50 years next March, Jacqueline, 68, has fallen ill and the former policeman says he will now devote his time to looking after her.
The 70-year-old, who served nine years in the Royal Navy, 25 years with the police and 16 years a county councillor, on top of his two decades as a Brentwood representative, also believes he has "done his bit" as a public servant.
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In 1996, the father-of-one sparked controversy when he defected from the Liberal Democrats to join the Tories.
But now, as he plans to leave local politics for good, he revealed that all is not well with the Brentwood Conservatives and he predicts more resignations will follow.
He added: "There is a lot of upset in the Conservative council group and I would not be surprised if one or two others go in the near future.
"I was going to give it up in 18 months anyway when I was due to stand again, but as my wife is unwell I've decided to go early."
His past Brentwood Council responsibilities include chairman of the highways and localism panel. He is also involved with the Conservators of Shenfield Common and Essex police and crime panel, which he "very much enjoyed".