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.