Nottinghamshire County Council leader to retire after surviving leadership challenge

Watch more of our videos on Shots! 
and live on Freeview channel 276
Visit Shots! now
The Conservative leader of Nottinghamshire County Council is retiring from politics before next year’s local elections.

Coun Kay Cutts made the announcement this week after surviving a leadership challenge.

She was challenged by Coun Neil Clarke in a private Nottinghamshire Conservative party meeting but survived the vote of no confidence, the details of which are not being made public.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

Coun Cutts had been strongly criticised for her handling of the ‘super council’ bid, which has not been selected by the Government for approval.

Coun Kay Cutts is retiring before next year's local electionsCoun Kay Cutts is retiring before next year's local elections
Coun Kay Cutts is retiring before next year's local elections

Opposition councillors have said the Conservatives now have a ‘lame duck’ as leader.

Last week, she decided not to stand as a candidate in next May’s local council elections.

In the statement, she said: “I am retiring from politics after 32 proud years serving my community and the people of Nottinghamshire.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

"This decision has been solely mine is for entirely personal reasons. It is the right thing for me, the right thing for my family and the right thing for this council.

"I offer my best wishes to my successor.

“This is an ambitious council and I am honoured in the meantime, to have been selected by my group to continue to serve as its leader until the end of this administrative term."

Coun Cutts was first elected in May 1989, and has been the leader of the council since May 2017.

Her controversial plans for local government reorganisation – the so-called super council – were shelved in 2018 ahead of a key vote.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

She brought the plans back earlier this year but all district and borough councils, and the city council agreed they were ‘united in opposition’ to the plan, and said they had not been properly consulted.

The plans were then scrapped again when the Government did not approve Nottinghamshire’s request to continue.

Coun Alan Rhodes, Labour group leader on the council, said: “She has failed to deliver the major policy of her administration – a unitary Nottinghamshire, despite having twice attempted.

“The decent thing to have done would have been to resign rather than cling on to power as a lame duck leader”

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

Coun Jason Zadrozny, leader of the Ashfield Independents and the leader of Ashfield District Council, added: “At a time when Nottinghamshire needs decisive, strong leadership – we have a lame duck Conservative leader in Kay Cutts.

Coun Cutts she remained committed to leading the council until the time comes for her step down and delivering the Conservative manifesto.

She said: “My focus, and that of my fellow members and officers, is to continue to draw down investment to fulfil those commitments, to make sure families can access an excellent education for their children in good quality schools, to attract new jobs, to boost skills in young people and to continue with our programme of investment and works to improve our county’s highways.

“Of course, the immediate priority is to make sure that we support Nottinghamshire through the Covid-19 crisis, to walk the incredibly delicate line between support of our businesses and keeping our communities safe.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

“As I look to the future, I maintain hope that our future generations can look forward to local government that is simpler, better value and more sustainable.

"This is more important than individuals or politics.”