Senior Derby City Conservative councillor Stephen Willoughby leaves the Conservatives to join the Lib Dems

November 26, 2019 4:00 PM
Derby Lib Dems welcome Cllr Steve Willoughby to the Lib Dems

Derby Lib Dems welcome Cllr Steve Willoughby to the Lib Dems

Senior Conservative councillor Stephen Willoughby has quit the Conservative party and joined the Lib Dems. Steven said "It's more a case that the Conservative Party has left me rather than me leaving the Conservative Party. Over the last 3 years, I have seen the party become unrecognisable from the one I first supported over 20 years ago. I can no longer be part of and campaign for a party where Pro-European and compassionate Conservatives such as Dominic Grieve are no longer welcome.

"It has shifted from a position where Britain's EU membership was accepted as the mainstream position to one where the Eurosceptics who now control the Conservative Party wish to take the Country on a dangerous journey in pursuit of their ideology. I campaigned for Remain in 2016 and still believe that Britain leaving the EU will cause great damage to our local economy and jobs here in Derby.

"The fact that the city's flood defences, that proved so helpful a few weeks ago, were as a result of funding from the EU, is just one recent example of the value of our continuing membership. I am delighted to now be part of the Liberal Democrat party that like me wants to Stop Brexit, and I am just one of an increasing movement of centre ground Conservatives to this party. I encourage all who have voted Conservative but are concerned about the damage of Brexit to join me in supporting the Liberal Democrats."

Welcoming Stephen to the Party Council Group, Lib Dem Council Group Leader Ruth Skelton said "Steve is one of many members of both Labour and Conservatives, who in all conscience can't stay in those parties as both have shifted to the political extremes. The Lib Dems are welcoming former members of both the Labour and Conservatives who are not prepared to stand by and watch our country lurch to the political extremes."