Bolton councillor crosses the floor and joins Labour after quitting the Conservatives

Coun Bev Fletcher, who represents Breightmet ward, originally stood in local politics for the Conservatives but is now joining the red rosette after sitting as an independent.

A councillor who quit the Conservatives has joined the Labour group on Bolton Council.

Coun Bev Fletcher, who currently sits as an independent representative for the Breightmet ward, will now be part of the opposition group on the council.

Originally elected as a Conservative, Coun Fletcher resigned from the party last year saying she ’didn’t feel the council have stood up to the government enough to support and protect Bolton’.

What did Labour say about Coun Fletcher joining?

Bolton Labour group leader Nick Peel, said: “It’s great to have Bev on board with us. She joins a dedicated team of people committed to bringing about improvements to Bolton.

“Bev has been a strong advocate, both for her constituents in Breightmet ward, but also for improvements to services across Bolton and I welcome the knowledge and experience that she will bring to our team.”

Coun Fletcher was first elected to the Breightmet Ward as a Conservative in May 2019, but later left the Conservatives in January 2021.

At the time she also cited ‘a fixation with political campaigning rather than helping the local economy’, as reasons for her decision. She has remained on the council as an independent since that time.

What did Coun Fletcher say about her political move?

Coun Fletcher said: “I became disillusioned with the Conservatives at Bolton Council not long after being elected, and left the Conservative Party due to this. The actions of the Government and the Conservative Party recently, but also over the last few years, has only strengthened my conviction and that I did the right thing.

“Being an independent councillor enabled me the time to sit, watch and evaluate the parties. I have thought long and hard over time about the future of Bolton but always came back to the same conclusion, that the party I feel truly represents Bolton is the Labour Party, both nationally and locally and are best placed to fix our broken society.

“I look forward to working with Nick and the Labour team over the coming months, and will do all I can to help secure a Labour council next year.”