Bournville Councillor Phil Walkling (Labour) has lost his election seat and is to step down with immediate effect due to ill health.
Cllr Walkling had previously said he would stand down in May this year but now Birmingham City Council have said he has lost his seat due to lack of attendance at council meetings since last summer.
Mary Locke, who will be the Labour candidate for Bournville Ward in May’s elections said: “Recently, Phil discovered that due to an administrative oversight his absence had not been properly recorded. As a result of this, the council has announced he will formally be losing his seat today (22 March), a short time before he was due to stand down at the local elections in May.”
In a message to voters in Bournville, Cllr Walkling said: “Some of you will know that I had an accident last year and was in hospital for three months afterwards, but I really hoped I would be able to resume my council work when I recovered. The local Labour Party, council leaders and our MP Steve McCabe have all been enormously supportive and stepped in to ensure my council work was covered and Bournville constituents continued to receive help with their problems.
“It was decided that I needed an operation after I left hospital but the operation was delayed several times because of NHS pressures which worsened my condition and meant my recovery is taking much longer than expected. Unfortunately, because of an administrative oversight my illness was not properly recorded and this error has resulted in my losing my council seat shortly before I was due to stand down at the forthcoming election.
“I am extremely proud to have been your Councillor and very sorry that I have not been well enough to take up the reins again. However, I am pleased that Bournville Labour Party have a wonderful candidate in Mary Locke and I know that if she is elected she will do everything she can for local people.”
Cllr Walkling’s departure was officially confirmed at a meeting of the Council Business Management Committee on March 22nd.