ONLINE EXCLUSIVE: Twit hits the fan - Wirral councillor says sorry after Twitter outburst

Wirral Globe: Cllr Chris Blakeley's Twitter page Cllr Chris Blakeley's Twitter page

TWO leading members of Wirral's ruling coalition administration became embroiled in an astonishing public row on the popular web network Twitter.

Tory chief whip Chris Blakeley accused his party colleague Sue Taylor of being "slipshod and unprofessional" over the way she chaired a licensing committee last week.

When she made an online reference to a long day on council business, Cllr Blakeley - who represents Moreton and Saughall Massie and is also constituency agent for Wirral West MP Esther McVey - Tweeted: "B*ll*cks."

Councillor Blakeley has now Tweeted he is "delighted that councillor Sue Taylor has accepted his apology and is happy with the action she is taking to improve Licensing procedures."

The row began on Thursday evening when the Conservative councillors - both avid users of the Twitter social networking website - clashed over a meeting Cllr Taylor had chaired that day at Wallasey Town Hall.

Nearing the end of her working day at the council, Cllr Taylor Tweeted: "Got to the Town Hall before 9am this morning and I am still here. Gruelling day on licensing and next a budget meeting at 9pm. Hurrah!"

Councillor Blakeley then replied: "b*ll*cks what time did u get to the town hall?"

Councillor Taylor, who represents New Brighton, retorted: "b*ll*cks what? I got to Town Hall this morning at 8.50am - why?"

To which Cllr Blakeley then replied: "9:40 more like."

The extraordinary public row continued, as Cllr Taylor protested: "Not sure how I was at my 9am briefing then..."

To that, Cllr Blakeley replied: "neither am I then when you said you had to wait at home for extra info to be faxed to you?"

He followed that with another "tweet" saying: "and if you were at a 9am briefing why were u not in the committee room for the designated 9:30 start?"

And then another one shortly after, which said: "the fact is that as chairman you were late for committee that is slipshod and unprofessional as well as wasting peoples time."

And another, apparently in response to Cllr Taylor's assertion that she was at the Town Hall for 9am: "well why didn't you say that this morning? The hearing was timed for 9:30 as far as I am concerned that means 9:30?"

In a Twitter post published online on Friday evening, Cllr Blakeley then said: "Is home after an immensely busy day (and unlike yesterday no time wasters) night off tonight relaxing glass of vino and the TV."

Councillor Taylor has 59 followers on Twitter, and follows 45 other contributors to the network. She has posted 4,918 Tweets.

Councillor Blakeley has 184 followers, follows 139 people on Twitter, and has posted 7,401 Tweets.

Comments (23)

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1:36pm Sat 19 Feb 11

bob wirral says...

are we paying these people to tweet?
are we paying these people to tweet? bob wirral

2:46pm Sat 19 Feb 11

No.9 says...

If Sue Taylor has her way on minimum pricing, a "relaxing glass of vino and the TV" will be a luxury deprived to many less well-off residents of Wirral.

Regarding this "tweeting"... how childish!
If Sue Taylor has her way on minimum pricing, a "relaxing glass of vino and the TV" will be a luxury deprived to many less well-off residents of Wirral. Regarding this "tweeting"... how childish! No.9

5:05pm Sat 19 Feb 11

spenser says...

''Slipshod and unprofessional'' at a committee?

I wonder who else could be labelled that this week?
''Slipshod and unprofessional'' at a committee? I wonder who else could be labelled that this week? spenser

2:26am Sun 20 Feb 11

Ben Beaconsfield says...

Are we paying these people for this? Isn't Cllr Blakeley picking up mega-bucks for being a councillor, a cabinet member, a member of Merseytravel and - you wonder where he gets the time really - an MP's constituency agent? Not bad for somebody who, only a few years ago was in charge of frozen turkeys at a food storage unit!! Come on, Chris, overcome your usual shy, retiring persona and tell us how much all this amounts to. And while we are at it, does the council - sorry, we the council-tax payers - supply you with a computer and internet connection?
A final word - gentlemen do not use such language to ladies. Draw your own conclusions, readers.
Are we paying these people for this? Isn't Cllr Blakeley picking up mega-bucks for being a councillor, a cabinet member, a member of Merseytravel and - you wonder where he gets the time really - an MP's constituency agent? Not bad for somebody who, only a few years ago was in charge of frozen turkeys at a food storage unit!! Come on, Chris, overcome your usual shy, retiring persona and tell us how much all this amounts to. And while we are at it, does the council - sorry, we the council-tax payers - supply you with a computer and internet connection? A final word - gentlemen do not use such language to ladies. Draw your own conclusions, readers. Ben Beaconsfield

2:22pm Sun 20 Feb 11

Merseymouth says...

I reckon Councillor Blakeley had been on the vino when he twittered never mind afterwards.

Of course it could all be a smokescreen to hide some very bad news they are about to announce. If not he qualifies for the Richard Keys/Andy Gray award for services to females!
I reckon Councillor Blakeley had been on the vino when he twittered never mind afterwards. Of course it could all be a smokescreen to hide some very bad news they are about to announce. If not he qualifies for the Richard Keys/Andy Gray award for services to females! Merseymouth

3:05pm Sun 20 Feb 11

Govwatcher says...

My, my, the Tories (or should it be 'Stories' in this case) lack of respect for themselves, let alone for we taxpayers has finally come into the public arena. Cllr Blakely, in my humble opinion has for many years mouthed off 'b......s' at every possible (and some impossible) opportunity! He's doing exactly what he accuses Cllr Sue Taylor of being guilty of.

Dear Residents of Moreton and Saughall Ward. Your esteemed Councillor of many years standing (and shouting the loudest) has demonstrated to the taxpayer what he truly is (an overpaid loudmouth bully). Suggest you vote him out of office at the earliest election. Good riddance to bad rubbish.
My, my, the Tories (or should it be 'Stories' in this case) lack of respect for themselves, let alone for we taxpayers has finally come into the public arena. Cllr Blakely, in my humble opinion has for many years mouthed off 'b......s' at every possible (and some impossible) opportunity! He's doing exactly what he accuses Cllr Sue Taylor of being guilty of. Dear Residents of Moreton and Saughall Ward. Your esteemed Councillor of many years standing (and shouting the loudest) has demonstrated to the taxpayer what he truly is (an overpaid loudmouth bully). Suggest you vote him out of office at the earliest election. Good riddance to bad rubbish. Govwatcher

6:16pm Sun 20 Feb 11

spenser says...

Well their total lack of respect and their utter contempt for the old and vulnerable was shown fully at the Health and Wellbeing scrutiny committee last Thursday evening.Shameful
Well their total lack of respect and their utter contempt for the old and vulnerable was shown fully at the Health and Wellbeing scrutiny committee last Thursday evening.Shameful spenser

1:47pm Mon 21 Feb 11

bigfoot says...

This is like schoolkids reading The Beano behind their textbooks in a lesson!! And as intellectiual-grow up and do what you where elected(ands receive payment ) to do-Grow up and PAY ATTENTION!!
This is like schoolkids reading The Beano behind their textbooks in a lesson!! And as intellectiual-grow up and do what you where elected(ands receive payment ) to do-Grow up and PAY ATTENTION!! bigfoot

3:23pm Mon 21 Feb 11

Spiffy says...

As their boss once said ..."Too many tweets might make a tw*t." :)
As their boss once said ..."Too many tweets might make a tw*t." :) Spiffy

5:07pm Mon 21 Feb 11

bickyboy says...

What people do in their spare time is clearly their own affair; but politicians need to be more careful than most when washing their dirty linen in public, because respect for those with whom we entrust our vote is a precious commodity which can haemorrhage all too easily. Personally, I think Twitter and Facebook are a slightly pathetic way of spending one's valuable leisure time, but each to their own.
What people do in their spare time is clearly their own affair; but politicians need to be more careful than most when washing their dirty linen in public, because respect for those with whom we entrust our vote is a precious commodity which can haemorrhage all too easily. Personally, I think Twitter and Facebook are a slightly pathetic way of spending one's valuable leisure time, but each to their own. bickyboy

6:17pm Mon 21 Feb 11

Potblack says...

Pleased Cllr Blakeley doesn't play for Tranmere - Showunmi's own goal against Peterborough on Saturday was 'like watching Brasil' compared to this howler. Does beg the question of just what kind of behaviour counts as "unprofessional" anyway? People living in glasshouses and all that!
Pleased Cllr Blakeley doesn't play for Tranmere - Showunmi's own goal against Peterborough on Saturday was 'like watching Brasil' compared to this howler. Does beg the question of just what kind of behaviour counts as "unprofessional" anyway? People living in glasshouses and all that! Potblack

2:17am Tue 22 Feb 11

slumdogg says...

Twit hits the fan, was by a very long way the best headline I've ever seen here. Where's it gone?
Twit hits the fan, was by a very long way the best headline I've ever seen here. Where's it gone? slumdogg

3:43am Tue 22 Feb 11

Ben Beaconsfield says...

bickyboy is right. What kind of politician, apart from the 'look at me, me, me - over here - aren't I clever?' type must be mad to use Twitter and Facebook. and when I say 'use' -7,401 tweets by Cllr Blakeley, isn't that some kind of compulsive disorder syndrome? Between these two twits, they have 59 and 184 followers respectively. Are they that desperate for votes? Well the New Brighton one certainly will be come May, when Tory abstentions, a big anti-cuts Labour resurgence and a strong UKIP showing in that ward (where a recent Tory defector has now joined them) will sweep the Conservatives away. And perhaps even in Moreton and Saughall Massie, where, following the recent tunnel toll hike fiasco and now this farce, people might start to ask: 'Is Cllr Blakeley worth the shed-load of money we pay him?'
And yes, I agree. 'Twit hits the fan' was a great headline. Bring it back!!
bickyboy is right. What kind of politician, apart from the 'look at me, me, me - over here - aren't I clever?' type must be mad to use Twitter and Facebook. and when I say 'use' -7,401 tweets by Cllr Blakeley, isn't that some kind of compulsive disorder syndrome? Between these two twits, they have 59 and 184 followers respectively. Are they that desperate for votes? Well the New Brighton one certainly will be come May, when Tory abstentions, a big anti-cuts Labour resurgence and a strong UKIP showing in that ward (where a recent Tory defector has now joined them) will sweep the Conservatives away. And perhaps even in Moreton and Saughall Massie, where, following the recent tunnel toll hike fiasco and now this farce, people might start to ask: 'Is Cllr Blakeley worth the shed-load of money we pay him?' And yes, I agree. 'Twit hits the fan' was a great headline. Bring it back!! Ben Beaconsfield

2:40pm Tue 22 Feb 11

Potblack says...

Steady on Ben! I know Tory infighting is probably quite entertaining for you, but I still think The Revolution is a long, long way off yet. Let's not forget the cringeworthy mess the previous Labour administration got Wirral into and some of the childish antics they got up to at the tax-payers expense. It's not that long ago and, despite popular opinion in some quarters, people do have good memories!
Steady on Ben! I know Tory infighting is probably quite entertaining for you, but I still think The Revolution is a long, long way off yet. Let's not forget the cringeworthy mess the previous Labour administration got Wirral into and some of the childish antics they got up to at the tax-payers expense. It's not that long ago and, despite popular opinion in some quarters, people do have good memories! Potblack

3:17pm Tue 22 Feb 11

ordinary personn says...

So Twitter and Facebook are slightly pathetic ways of spending ones valuable leisure time whereas writing letters to the local paper and arguing on its website are…? ;-)
So Twitter and Facebook are slightly pathetic ways of spending ones valuable leisure time whereas writing letters to the local paper and arguing on its website are…? ;-) ordinary personn

2:35pm Wed 23 Feb 11

Webstertheobscure says...

ordinary personn wrote:
So Twitter and Facebook are slightly pathetic ways of spending ones valuable leisure time whereas writing letters to the local paper and arguing on its website are…? ;-)
Well tweeters from Egypt and the middle east may well disagree with you, there is much good that has from social media, such as freeing up information.... This however is not an example and merely serves to highlight what petty chumps we have representing the good people of Wirral.

The point is that this is the sort of unprofessional amateur night nonsense that has plagued Wirral Council for years.
[quote][p][bold]ordinary personn[/bold] wrote: So Twitter and Facebook are slightly pathetic ways of spending ones valuable leisure time whereas writing letters to the local paper and arguing on its website are…? ;-)[/p][/quote]Well tweeters from Egypt and the middle east may well disagree with you, there is much good that has from social media, such as freeing up information.... This however is not an example and merely serves to highlight what petty chumps we have representing the good people of Wirral. The point is that this is the sort of unprofessional amateur night nonsense that has plagued Wirral Council for years. Webstertheobscure

3:17pm Wed 23 Feb 11

Ben Beaconsfield says...

If you think I'm waiting for a revolution from the Left, you've entirely mis-read my politics, Potblack.
I just believe in old-fashioned decency in politics, something which seems to be a rare commodity judging by the sort of deceitful campaign techniques used by certain individuals nowadays.
If you think I'm waiting for a revolution from the Left, you've entirely mis-read my politics, Potblack. I just believe in old-fashioned decency in politics, something which seems to be a rare commodity judging by the sort of deceitful campaign techniques used by certain individuals nowadays. Ben Beaconsfield

3:46pm Wed 23 Feb 11

Potblack says...

Bit touchy aren't we , Ben? Was there ever a time when we had "old-fashioned decency" in politics? One thing we shouldn't do is tar everyone with the same brush. Fact is, believe it or not, there are plenty of hard-working councillors from all sides, who are very conscientious and whose efforts in helping people go largely unsung. I'm glad though, that we still live in a society where politics get played out in the open and everyone can have their say.
Bit touchy aren't we , Ben? Was there ever a time when we had "old-fashioned decency" in politics? One thing we shouldn't do is tar everyone with the same brush. Fact is, believe it or not, there are plenty of hard-working councillors from all sides, who are very conscientious and whose efforts in helping people go largely unsung. I'm glad though, that we still live in a society where politics get played out in the open and everyone can have their say. Potblack

8:10am Thu 24 Feb 11

Ben Beaconsfield says...

Potblack: From my very first venture into this forum, I've said what you say about there being plenty of hardworking councillors on all sides here in Wirral. I think I may have even named a couple.The ones I despise are the "me. me, me - look over here at how clever I am" preening peacocks who dominate local party politics nowadays.
They eat and sleep publicity and self-promotion. Their diet is one of perpetual press release. Their only exercise is standing on the pointless picket line (Wards 92 and 3, local post offices, Remploy) for a well-arranged photo-opportunity. Their reward - fat allowances for giving the impression they are doing it all out of nothing less noble that altruism.
Until recently these people came mainly from one area of Wirral and from one party, but unfortunately their disease is spreading and its ruthless cynicism is likely to kill local politics altogether.
Potblack: From my very first venture into this forum, I've said what you say about there being plenty of hardworking councillors on all sides here in Wirral. I think I may have even named a couple.The ones I despise are the "me. me, me - look over here at how clever I am" preening peacocks who dominate local party politics nowadays. They eat and sleep publicity and self-promotion. Their diet is one of perpetual press release. Their only exercise is standing on the pointless picket line (Wards 92 and 3, local post offices, Remploy) for a well-arranged photo-opportunity. Their reward - fat allowances for giving the impression they are doing it all out of nothing less noble that altruism. Until recently these people came mainly from one area of Wirral and from one party, but unfortunately their disease is spreading and its ruthless cynicism is likely to kill local politics altogether. Ben Beaconsfield

3:47pm Thu 24 Feb 11

salty88 says...

This is just another example of how disgraceful this council is. People of Wirral WISE UP get rid of these morons now Absolutely pathetic
This is just another example of how disgraceful this council is. People of Wirral WISE UP get rid of these morons now Absolutely pathetic salty88

9:44pm Thu 24 Feb 11

PaulCa says...

I wonder whether Chris Blakeley will be joining the march on Saturday, called to try and save the Burtons' workers jobs? Somehow I think it's unlikely, given that he's not allowing news about the march to be posted to his website. His public words of sympathy with the workers when the news came out it seems were hollow ones. One can only assume he's secretly backing Burtons' managers position - given his lack of apparent support and his all too apparent obsession with "nimbying" phone mast applications.
I wonder whether Chris Blakeley will be joining the march on Saturday, called to try and save the Burtons' workers jobs? Somehow I think it's unlikely, given that he's not allowing news about the march to be posted to his website. His public words of sympathy with the workers when the news came out it seems were hollow ones. One can only assume he's secretly backing Burtons' managers position - given his lack of apparent support and his all too apparent obsession with "nimbying" phone mast applications. PaulCa

8:46am Fri 25 Feb 11

ordinary personn says...

Webstertheobscure wrote:
ordinary personn wrote: So Twitter and Facebook are slightly pathetic ways of spending ones valuable leisure time whereas writing letters to the local paper and arguing on its website are…? ;-)
Well tweeters from Egypt and the middle east may well disagree with you, there is much good that has from social media, such as freeing up information.... This however is not an example and merely serves to highlight what petty chumps we have representing the good people of Wirral. The point is that this is the sort of unprofessional amateur night nonsense that has plagued Wirral Council for years.
Hi Webstertheobscure,

I guess you took my post completely out of context...look back and it was Bickyboy who originally made that statement. I was trying to be ironic (but obviously failing) hence the ;-)
[quote][p][bold]Webstertheobscure[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]ordinary personn[/bold] wrote: So Twitter and Facebook are slightly pathetic ways of spending ones valuable leisure time whereas writing letters to the local paper and arguing on its website are…? ;-)[/p][/quote]Well tweeters from Egypt and the middle east may well disagree with you, there is much good that has from social media, such as freeing up information.... This however is not an example and merely serves to highlight what petty chumps we have representing the good people of Wirral. The point is that this is the sort of unprofessional amateur night nonsense that has plagued Wirral Council for years.[/p][/quote]Hi Webstertheobscure, I guess you took my post completely out of context...look back and it was Bickyboy who originally made that statement. I was trying to be ironic (but obviously failing) hence the ;-) ordinary personn

12:45am Sun 27 Feb 11

bickyboy says...

ordinary personn wrote:
So Twitter and Facebook are slightly pathetic ways of spending ones valuable leisure time whereas writing letters to the local paper and arguing on its website are…? ;-)
OP, its not my bag but I did qualify the comment by saying "each to their own". Did you miss that bit?
Oh, and Webster's right--social networking can be a valuable tool for sharing information and organising concerted action. Unless you live in the West and merely want to use Facebook to tell perfect strangers that your constipated cat just did a poo.
[quote][p][bold]ordinary personn[/bold] wrote: So Twitter and Facebook are slightly pathetic ways of spending ones valuable leisure time whereas writing letters to the local paper and arguing on its website are…? ;-)[/p][/quote]OP, its not my bag but I did qualify the comment by saying "each to their own". Did you miss that bit? Oh, and Webster's right--social networking can be a valuable tool for sharing information and organising concerted action. Unless you live in the West and merely want to use Facebook to tell perfect strangers that your constipated cat just did a poo. bickyboy

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