Party ‘dumps’ town stalwart

Bicester Advertiser: Les Sibley Les Sibley

A ROW among the ranks of the North Oxfordshire Labour Party has seen a long-standing Bicester councillor “dumped”.

Les Sibley, a current town and Cherwell district councillor, is standing independently under his name in next month’s Oxfordshire County Council election.

Meanwhile, the North Oxfordshire Labour group has fielded Steve Sargeant as its prospective councillor for Bicester West.

Labour stalwart Mr Sibley refused to be drawn on the dispute, but the Banbury Constituency Labour Party say its view was Mr Sibley already had too many commitments as a town and district councillor and trade union representative.

Now Conservative MP for Banbury Sir Tony Baldry has waded into the row backing Mr Sibley, who he described as “faithfully” representing the people of Bicester for many years.

In a statement, Mr Sibley said: “I have put myself forward as a candidate in these local elections as I want to continue representing, working and being the local voice for people of Bicester as I have done for the past two decades.”

Sir Tony said: “Most people in Bicester will consider it a pretty poor show that the Labour Party has dumped a former Mayor of Bicester and someone who has given a large part of his life to Bicester as one of their candidates.”

The MP suggested the merger of the Transport and General Workers’ Union with other unions may have been a factor in the group’s decision, as it funded Mr Sibley’s previous general election bids.

But Terry Davis, secretary of the Banbury Constituency Labour Party, accused Sir Tony of “political mischief”. He said the trade unions merged five years ago to form Unite, and there was “no connection between trade union funding” and the group’s decision.

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Mr Davis said he was “not surprised” by Mr Sibley’s decision and that he had been “drifting away” from the Labour group and “virtually stopped” attending meetings.

He said Mr Sibley had taken the matter to the independent Regional Appeal Panel of the Labour Party, but his appeal failed.

Mr Sibley was first elected as a councillor in 1995 and has previously represented the Bicester West ward at the county council between 2001 and 2005, and stood as the Labour candidate in the past three general elections.

The candidates for the Oxfordshire County Council Bicester West seat are Norman Bolster, Conservative – the sitting councillor; Darren Cain, UKIP; Elizabeth Fleming, Liberal Democrat; David Newman, Green Party; Steve Sargeant, Labour; and Les Sibley.

Comments (18)

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10:21pm Sat 13 Apr 13

owen1954 says...

Two things wrong with your article about LES SIBEY. (1) I have put myself forward as a candidate in these local election as I want to continue representing working and being the LOCAL VOICE for the people of Bicester.Then why did you put yourself forward as a MP for Milton Keynes ?.(2) Being backed by a MP for Banbury Sir Tony Baldry. Come on Les even you have principles ?? or could it be SIR LES SIBLEY (Tory)
Two things wrong with your article about LES SIBEY. (1) I have put myself forward as a candidate in these local election as I want to continue representing working and being the LOCAL VOICE for the people of Bicester.Then why did you put yourself forward as a MP for Milton Keynes ?.(2) Being backed by a MP for Banbury Sir Tony Baldry. Come on Les even you have principles ?? or could it be SIR LES SIBLEY (Tory) owen1954

10:21pm Sat 13 Apr 13

Myron Blatz says...

It will be interesting to see what the voters think, and just who they prefer to represent them. If I was Labour, I wouldn't be counting chickens just yet - cluck, cluck!
It will be interesting to see what the voters think, and just who they prefer to represent them. If I was Labour, I wouldn't be counting chickens just yet - cluck, cluck! Myron Blatz

3:32am Sun 14 Apr 13

Scaramucia says...

owen1954 wrote:
Two things wrong with your article about LES SIBEY. (1) I have put myself forward as a candidate in these local election as I want to continue representing working and being the LOCAL VOICE for the people of Bicester.Then why did you put yourself forward as a MP for Milton Keynes ?.(2) Being backed by a MP for Banbury Sir Tony Baldry. Come on Les even you have principles ?? or could it be SIR LES SIBLEY (Tory)
Baldry is supporting Sibey simply because if he wins it will be one less Labour Cllr eating into the Tory majority.
[quote][p][bold]owen1954[/bold] wrote: Two things wrong with your article about LES SIBEY. (1) I have put myself forward as a candidate in these local election as I want to continue representing working and being the LOCAL VOICE for the people of Bicester.Then why did you put yourself forward as a MP for Milton Keynes ?.(2) Being backed by a MP for Banbury Sir Tony Baldry. Come on Les even you have principles ?? or could it be SIR LES SIBLEY (Tory)[/p][/quote]Baldry is supporting Sibey simply because if he wins it will be one less Labour Cllr eating into the Tory majority. Scaramucia

12:43pm Mon 15 Apr 13

owen1954 says...

Scaramucia wrote:
owen1954 wrote: Two things wrong with your article about LES SIBEY. (1) I have put myself forward as a candidate in these local election as I want to continue representing working and being the LOCAL VOICE for the people of Bicester.Then why did you put yourself forward as a MP for Milton Keynes ?.(2) Being backed by a MP for Banbury Sir Tony Baldry. Come on Les even you have principles ?? or could it be SIR LES SIBLEY (Tory)
Baldry is supporting Sibey simply because if he wins it will be one less Labour Cllr eating into the Tory majority.
Sir Tony Baldry(Con) Is only backing Les Sibley to split the vote. He is worried that Darren Cain(UKIP) will take votes from the Conservative candidate Norman Bolster. Come on Labour Party voters vote for Steve Sargeant (Labour).Show the ConDem what you think on their attack on working class people. Dont listen to Sir Tony Baldry(Con) and split the Labour vote!.
[quote][p][bold]Scaramucia[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]owen1954[/bold] wrote: Two things wrong with your article about LES SIBEY. (1) I have put myself forward as a candidate in these local election as I want to continue representing working and being the LOCAL VOICE for the people of Bicester.Then why did you put yourself forward as a MP for Milton Keynes ?.(2) Being backed by a MP for Banbury Sir Tony Baldry. Come on Les even you have principles ?? or could it be SIR LES SIBLEY (Tory)[/p][/quote]Baldry is supporting Sibey simply because if he wins it will be one less Labour Cllr eating into the Tory majority.[/p][/quote]Sir Tony Baldry(Con) Is only backing Les Sibley to split the vote. He is worried that Darren Cain(UKIP) will take votes from the Conservative candidate Norman Bolster. Come on Labour Party voters vote for Steve Sargeant (Labour).Show the ConDem what you think on their attack on working class people. Dont listen to Sir Tony Baldry(Con) and split the Labour vote!. owen1954

4:29pm Mon 15 Apr 13

CupHalfFull says...

Truly this episode shows the Banbury Labour Party as a bunch of unprincipled shysters.
Truly this episode shows the Banbury Labour Party as a bunch of unprincipled shysters. CupHalfFull

8:21pm Mon 15 Apr 13

owen1954 says...

Only one unprincipled person here and thats Les Sibley. Not the Banbury Labour Party. Steve Sargeant was chosen by members of the Labour Party to represent Bicester West. Can anybody answer if Les Sibley is Conservative/UKIP/or LibDem for he has left it blank. Maybe he is trying to mislead the voters of Bicester West.
Only one unprincipled person here and thats Les Sibley. Not the Banbury Labour Party. Steve Sargeant was chosen by members of the Labour Party to represent Bicester West. Can anybody answer if Les Sibley is Conservative/UKIP/or LibDem for he has left it blank. Maybe he is trying to mislead the voters of Bicester West. owen1954

9:00am Tue 16 Apr 13

CupHalfFull says...

How many Bicester Labour members were involved with that decision then?
How many Bicester Labour members were involved with that decision then? CupHalfFull

1:05pm Thu 18 Apr 13

davidrnewman says...

It shows how little party machines respect local needs and wishes.

Green Party candidates are committed to local communities, not opportunists. In Bicester West, let's set up a web site in Chinese to promote all local businesses, not just the Village, so that the visiting tourists spend their money in the local community, creating more local jobs and income.
It shows how little party machines respect local needs and wishes. Green Party candidates are committed to local communities, not opportunists. In Bicester West, let's set up a web site in Chinese to promote all local businesses, not just the Village, so that the visiting tourists spend their money in the local community, creating more local jobs and income. davidrnewman

10:32pm Fri 19 Apr 13

Yellow Parrot says...

As the only other non-tory Bicester councillor on Bicester Town Council I echo Tony Baldry's comments about Les Sibley.
I detect some very "sour grapes" from N.Oxon Labour Party.

Les is a fighter for Bicester and this town's people of that I have no doubt at all.

Nick Cotter (Bicester Town Council - Lib Dem).
As the only other non-tory Bicester councillor on Bicester Town Council I echo Tony Baldry's comments about Les Sibley. I detect some very "sour grapes" from N.Oxon Labour Party. Les is a fighter for Bicester and this town's people of that I have no doubt at all. Nick Cotter (Bicester Town Council - Lib Dem). Yellow Parrot

3:03am Sat 20 Apr 13

owen1954 says...

It gets better by the day. Conservative/Lib Dems all supporting Les Sibley. Well that must be a first. Are they trying to divide the Labour vote?.
It gets better by the day. Conservative/Lib Dems all supporting Les Sibley. Well that must be a first. Are they trying to divide the Labour vote?. owen1954

1:35pm Wed 24 Apr 13

Severian says...

Looks like Les has paid the usual Labour price for many years of service to Bicester - being stabbed in the back to make way for someone else!

Once again BANBURY Labour Party is doing Bicester in.

Les is not in my ward so I won't be able to vote for him, but I for absolute sure will not be voting Labour in Bicester North!
Looks like Les has paid the usual Labour price for many years of service to Bicester - being stabbed in the back to make way for someone else! Once again BANBURY Labour Party is doing Bicester in. Les is not in my ward so I won't be able to vote for him, but I for absolute sure will not be voting Labour in Bicester North! Severian

1:36pm Wed 24 Apr 13

Severian says...

CupHalfFull wrote:
Truly this episode shows the Banbury Labour Party as a bunch of unprincipled shysters.
In what way does this surprise anyone?
[quote][p][bold]CupHalfFull[/bold] wrote: Truly this episode shows the Banbury Labour Party as a bunch of unprincipled shysters.[/p][/quote]In what way does this surprise anyone? Severian

7:02am Sun 28 Apr 13

owen1954 says...

If anybody in Bicester are considering voting for Les Sibley please do the following. Ask the former Unite members at MOD Bicester who transfered to the GMB. What they think of Les Sibley who was their Senior Trade Union representative.
If anybody in Bicester are considering voting for Les Sibley please do the following. Ask the former Unite members at MOD Bicester who transfered to the GMB. What they think of Les Sibley who was their Senior Trade Union representative. owen1954

1:59am Tue 30 Apr 13

Severian says...

owen1954 wrote:
If anybody in Bicester are considering voting for Les Sibley please do the following. Ask the former Unite members at MOD Bicester who transfered to the GMB. What they think of Les Sibley who was their Senior Trade Union representative.
So yours isn't a personal campaign against Les then? Your comments are all snide and unpleasant. I assume from this comment that you are a member of Unite, and not the GMB?

You also know, as well as most of us I imagine, that a candidate is not allowed BY LAW to describe themselves as Lib Dem/ Conservative/ UKIP/ Labour or anything else unless they are representing a political party which has been registered with the Electoral Commission.

All Les is allowed to call himself by law is "Independent".

And I urge everyone who knows how much effort he has put into Bicester over many many years, to support Les, not some Banbury Labour Party shoe-in no-one has heard of.
[quote][p][bold]owen1954[/bold] wrote: If anybody in Bicester are considering voting for Les Sibley please do the following. Ask the former Unite members at MOD Bicester who transfered to the GMB. What they think of Les Sibley who was their Senior Trade Union representative.[/p][/quote]So yours isn't a personal campaign against Les then? Your comments are all snide and unpleasant. I assume from this comment that you are a member of Unite, and not the GMB? You also know, as well as most of us I imagine, that a candidate is not allowed BY LAW to describe themselves as Lib Dem/ Conservative/ UKIP/ Labour or anything else unless they are representing a political party which has been registered with the Electoral Commission. All Les is allowed to call himself by law is "Independent". And I urge everyone who knows how much effort he has put into Bicester over many many years, to support Les, not some Banbury Labour Party shoe-in no-one has heard of. Severian

4:09pm Tue 30 Apr 13

tired99 says...

What exactly has Les Sibley done for Bicester? He gets his face in the paper a lot but doesn't seem to really get anything substantial done. If he had any principles he would be supporting Steve Sargeant.
What exactly has Les Sibley done for Bicester? He gets his face in the paper a lot but doesn't seem to really get anything substantial done. If he had any principles he would be supporting Steve Sargeant. tired99

10:30pm Wed 1 May 13

owen1954 says...

Could someone please tell me what has Les Sibley done for Bicester?. Les Sibley will be remembered as the person who split the Labour vote and let the Conservatives win. Mind you I did hear he is joining the CONSERVATIVE PARTY.
Could someone please tell me what has Les Sibley done for Bicester?. Les Sibley will be remembered as the person who split the Labour vote and let the Conservatives win. Mind you I did hear he is joining the CONSERVATIVE PARTY. owen1954

3:22pm Fri 3 May 13

Severian says...

owen1954 wrote:
Could someone please tell me what has Les Sibley done for Bicester?. Les Sibley will be remembered as the person who split the Labour vote and let the Conservatives win. Mind you I did hear he is joining the CONSERVATIVE PARTY.
OR Les Sibley will be remembered as the local candidate who absolutely TROUNCED the parachuted in Labour candidate, who struggled to finish FOURTH.

Your personal abuse and vitriol obviously didn't extend to the people who live in Bicester West and voted for Les in their droves.

Perhaps Labour should pay more attention to the people who vote, rather than playing their internal party games as usual.
[quote][p][bold]owen1954[/bold] wrote: Could someone please tell me what has Les Sibley done for Bicester?. Les Sibley will be remembered as the person who split the Labour vote and let the Conservatives win. Mind you I did hear he is joining the CONSERVATIVE PARTY.[/p][/quote]OR Les Sibley will be remembered as the local candidate who absolutely TROUNCED the parachuted in Labour candidate, who struggled to finish FOURTH. Your personal abuse and vitriol obviously didn't extend to the people who live in Bicester West and voted for Les in their droves. Perhaps Labour should pay more attention to the people who vote, rather than playing their internal party games as usual. Severian

10:41am Sat 11 May 13

tired99 says...

Or maybe Les Sibley will be remembered as the man who sold his soul to the Tories for a taste of power.
Or maybe Les Sibley will be remembered as the man who sold his soul to the Tories for a taste of power. tired99

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