A HORWICH and Blackrod councillor — who claims she is now living in Oxfordshire because she was being stalked — said she is dismayed a leaflet criticising her move has been distributed to 1,500 homes.

Cllr Lindsey Kell left her home in Blackrod in June after, she says, suffering two years of abuse from a stalker who would turn up outside her house and at council meetings.

She now lives in Witney in Oxfordshire, more than 175 miles away.

In a leaflet distributed in the run-up to the Brazley Ward by-election tonight, Lib Dem candidate for Horwich Town Council Doug Bagnall criticised her for moving to ‘posh Oxford’.

The leaflet says: “Labour woman Lindsey Kell ditched Horwich back in June and is funding her lifestyle in the south with your money. Her antics have been revealed on a website where she claims she likes to ‘party hard’.

“Horwich residents will be left scratching their heads when they realise they are paying £11,000 per year for a councillor who doesn’t even live here.”

Cllr Kell said her stalker moved into a house around the corner from her home, and the police were involved. She added: “I felt afraid every day and had to pass their house to get the bus or train.

“I have been commuting between my ward and the south east. However, I have kept up with my commitments locally.

“Having sought to prevent my whereabouts being made public, I am disappointed the local Lib Dems have used my social networks for political point-scoring.”

Cllr Kell, who represents the Horwich and Blackrod ward on Bolton Council but does not sit on Horwich Town Council, said she would stand down in May and that she had not done so already because she wanted to avoid the expense of a by-election.

She added: “I get an £11,000 allowance like every other councillor in Bolton, I’m no different in that respect.

“I don’t look upon it as ‘leaving’ as I come back regularly for meetings and ward functions, plus I undertake casework and discussions about area forum money.

“Many councillors work or have other commitments that take them outside of the borough.”

But Mr Bagnall said it is unfair the Horwich public are not represented by their elected member.

He added: “We have sympathy for her as a person — it’s a horrible situation to be in. But she is in public life and she’s very public on her Twitter account about what she’s up to. Should she have left left people unrepresented while still claiming an allowance?”

Voters will go to the polls today to decide Brazley Ward’s next Horwich town councillor.

The nominations are:

  • Conservative: Stephen Wallen
  • Green Party: Rod Riesco
  • Liberal Democract: Doug Bagnall
  • Labour: Kevin McKeon
  • UKIP: Bob Horsefield