Plane banner campaign calls for Lord Mayor of Portsmouth to resign - because she’s Welsh

PROUD Lord Mayor of Portsmouth Cllr Lynne Stagg
PROUD Lord Mayor of Portsmouth Cllr Lynne Stagg

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A PLANE has been flying over Portsmouth calling for the resignation of the city’s Lord Mayor.

The Campaign for an English Parliament has organised the stunt after claiming it is unhappy with a response it says it received from Lord Mayor Councillor Lynne Stagg.

The plane tows the banner ‘RESIGN POMPEY MAYOR’.

A campaign van has also been seen driving around the city.

Cllr Lynne Stagg, who represents Baffins ward and taught in Portsmouth for more than 30 years, criticised the actions of the campaign group and said they were looking for someone to target.

Cllr Stagg was born and brought up in Wales, but told The News she was a very proud resident of Portsmouth.

She said she was emailed by the campaign director Eddie Bone, asking if she supported an English Parliament in light of the loss of shipbuilding jobs in Portsmouth,

Cllr Stagg told The News: ‘I said for a start that as Lord Mayor, I have to be apolitical.

‘I said I am Welsh. I said I don’t think it’s appropriate for me to tell the English what to have.

‘I would have been in trouble as Lord Mayor if I did.

‘It’s written in the statute books for Portsmouth - the Lord Mayor is apolitical and does not express any political views at all.’

She added: ‘I have lived in England longer than I have lived in Wales, but it still does not alter the fact that I am Welsh.

‘I think he’s looking for trouble.

‘What have I got to resign about?

‘I have just been unveiling plaques by the Portsmouth Society, I have been to three locations, and three separate groups of people said what a fantastic job I was doing as Lord Mayor, it was really nice to hear.

‘You will always get somebody who objects.’

Mr Bone said: ‘The Mayor of Portsmouth is fully entitled to say she cannot make decisions for England but clearly this makes her role as a Mayor of an English city untenable and she should resign.’

He added: ‘We are saying that she should not be the first citizen of an English city.’

Portsmouth City Council’s leader, Gerald Vernon-Jackson, said the role of all non-elected Lord Mayors was not to get involved in party politics.