North Tyneside Council has come under fire after it demanded that Tory councillors took down Union Jack flags that were decorating the party’s Group Room in the council building.
Bryn Roberts, head of Law and Governance at North Tyneside Council, allegedly deemed the flags ‘not appropriate’ in a message sent to Councillor Sean Brockbank, leader of North Tyneside Conservatives.
Mr Roberts stated that the UK’s national flag was ‘overtly political’ and could not be used as decoration within the council building, Guido Fawkes reports.
He reportedly wrote: ‘Hi Councillor Brockbank – whilst delivering post today, it was noted that the above pictures, together with a quantity of Union Flag bunting, has been erected in the Conservative Group Room.
‘This is not an appropriate use of the room (and risks becoming an overtly political matter in an apolitical venue), so I will make arrangements for them to be removed at the end of the day.’
Bryn Roberts of North Tyneside Council, allegedly deemed the flags (left) ‘not appropriate’ in a message sent to Councillor Sean Brockbank, and had them removed (right)
Bryn Roberts, North Tyneside Council law chief
The council official continued: ‘I would be grateful if you could reinforce to your group that the facility is provided within a publicly funded building and, as such, should not be used in this fashion. Kind regards, Bryn.’
A spokesperson from North Tyneside Conservatives said: ‘The Union Flag is part of our national identity and is indeed flown in government buildings up and down the country – it is astonishing that this is not allowed in North Tyneside.
‘The flag is one of the most recognisable symbols of the UK across the world, people look to it as a sign of hope and freedom – we firmly believe it should be flown, and indeed displayed with pride.’
Mr Roberts stated that the UK’s national flag was ‘overtly political’ and could not be used as decoration within the council building
Neil Garratt, Conservative London Assembly Member for Croydon and Sutton, tweeted: ‘Google Street view looks like they have the Union Jack flying outside the North Tyneside Council.
‘If it’s OK outside the building, how can it be ‘political’ and forbidden inside the building? Idiots.’
Constituent Liz Rhodes Lobb wrote: ‘Shame on North Tyneside Council – ordered the removal of the National flag of our country, the Union Jack as it’s too political. Disgraceful!.’
Constituent Liz Rhodes Lobb wrote: ‘Shame on North Tyneside Council ordered the removal of the National flag of our country’
Neil Garratt, Conservative London Assembly Member for Croydon and Sutton, tweeted: ‘Google Street view looks like they have the Union Jack flying outside’
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