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Calls for by-election in Birkenhead

A member of the Birkenhead Labour Party has told ITV Granada he would be prepared to stand against the town's MP in any forthcoming election.

Councillor Tony Norbury is calling for Frank Field to trigger a by-election after the MP was told his decision to resign the party whip means he is no longer a member of Labour.

Mr Field has claimed his local party is now governed by "a culture of intolerance, nastiness and intimidation".

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Council chiefs defend use of Bentleys and limousines

Cheshire West and Chester Council has come under fire by the Tax Payer's Alliance over the cost of its luxury limousine used by civic dignitaries.

The Bentley Continental has a starting retail price of £132,000. Some say the money could be better spent elsewhere.

In a statement to Granada Reports, The council said:

Cheshire West and Chester Council do not pay for any lease or own any civic vehicle.

The City of Chester Charter Trustees lease two vehicles, including a Bentley Flying Spur and a Jaguar XE Prestige. The Jaguar replaced a Vauxhall Insignia in Autumn 2017. Ellesmere Port Charter Trustees also lease a Vauxhall Zafira Tourer.

– Cheshire West and Chester Council

Councillor Alex Black, Chair of the City of Chester Charter Trustees, said:

Charter Trustees are separate organisations from the Council and raise their own precept. They have their own decision-making powers and manage their own budgets. The Council cannot influence their decisions.

These two vehicles are in constant use by our very busy civic team. Decisions like vehicle leases are discussed and voted on by the board of trustees. There are a number of factors that go into deciding which vehicles are most appropriate, including suitability, supporting local industry and environmental impact.

– Councillor Alex Black
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