Wiltshire Publications

Issue 443 – Pubwatch faces backlash after

Westbury’s residents have backed the councillor who the PubWatch group asked to be replaced for speaking out about daytime and binge drinking in the town. The Castle Inn and Westbury Labour Club have both resigned from the PubWatch group saying that they did not agree with the group’s view.

In the last issue, White Horse News published a letter from Mike Jackson, chairman of Westbury PubWatch in which the organisation asked for another liaison to be appointed from the council. The letter, sent to the White Horse News and Westbury Town Council, alleged that cllr Cuthbert-Murray was damaging the image of the licenced trade with “constant appearances and self-promotion in the media”.
Councillor Cuthbert-Murray has vowed to continue in his role regardless. He said, “Westbury PubWatch clearly have approached the media first and defamed my character with odd tales, which I find quite bizarre.
“Perhaps they assumed they have some political jurisdiction over councillors; I can say they do not. I will continue with and not turn in partnership with the police to make our streets safe for everyone to walk, rest and play in Westbury.”
Since its publication the White Horse News has been contacted by two members of PubWatch who wish to resign from the scheme in protest at the treatment of cllr Cuthbert-Murray. We have also been contacted by residents in the town who support cllr Cuthbert Murray’s stance.
Derry Williams, landlady at the Castle Inn said, “I have at no time agreed with comments made about cllr Cuthbert Murray, neither has my husband.
“Cllr Cuthbert Murray has, as indeed have the local constabulary, have been both active and supportive in removing a handful of persistent local drunks who cause trouble on a continuous level.
“Whilst we will continue to alert other licensed premises of any trouble/trouble makers, (as we will Nick [Holt] also) we are also resigning from Pub Watch with immediate effect.”
Ken Newson, secretary of Westbury Labour Club said they would also be resigning.
He added: “We feel that the published letter does neither represent the views of the Westbury Labour Club nor do we agree with the personalised comments regarding Cllr Cuthbert-Murray, and are therefore withdrawing from our association with Pub Watch with immediate effect.”
Mike Jackson was unavailable to comment.

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