Fareham politician Sean Woodward resigns cabinet role in Hampshire County Council due to 'personal reasons'

A SENIOR councillor has resigned his Hampshire County Council cabinet position due to ‘personal reasons’, less than a week after a conduct panel found he had compromised his position over a £15,000 grant.

Monday, 14th December 2020, 2:25 pm
Updated Monday, 14th December 2020, 2:45 pm
Sean Woodward, leader of Fareham Borough Council, has resigned his executive member role within Hampshire County Council.

Councillor Sean Woodward resigned from his position as executive member for recreation and heritage, which he has held since May 2018.

A member of the council since 2005, Cllr Woodward remains a county councillor and will leave his cabinet position with immediate effect.

His departure is due to ‘personal reasons and pressure of work’, according to a statement from Hampshire County Council.

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Council leader Keith Mans said: ‘Earlier today, I accepted the formal resignation of Cllr Seán Woodward from his role on cabinet.

‘I wish to thank Sean for his support to my cabinet. I will be announcing his replacement in the next day or so.’

Cllr Woodward was contacted for comment.

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His resignation follows a conduct panel ruling that the politician compromised his position as a cabinet member with ‘unusual’ behaviour around a £15,000 grant to a motorcycle display team last year.

The panel recommended no further action was taken, commenting that they believed no dishonesty had taken place.

Cllr Woodward, who is also the leader of Fareham Borough Council, later posted an apology for his ‘single lapse of judgement’ on Facebook.

The panel has led to more than 250 people signing a petition calling for further investigation.

An email seen by The News shows that Fareham Borough Council officers had previously investigated a similar complaint earlier this year, but at the time found no evidence that he had breached the council’s code of conduct.

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