Windsor council leader faces no confidence vote over homeless comments


A Conservative council leader who suggested rough sleepers in Windsor be moved on ahead of the royal wedding will face a vote of no confidence.

Simon Dudley said beggars could present the town in a "sadly unfavourable light" when Prince Harry marries American actress Meghan Markle in May.

Every councillor in the Royal Borough of Windsor and Maidenhead has been summoned to an extraordinary meeting on Monday evening, when it will hear public questions and a motion of no confidence.

In a letter to police, he complained about "aggressive begging and intimidation", and "bags and detritus" on the streets.

He said police should use their powers under the 1824 Vagrancy Act and the Anti-Social Behaviour, Crime and Policing Act 2014 to "protect residents and tourists".

A petition to stop rough sleepers being taken off the streets has attracted more than 270,000 signatures.

Three councillors, Paul Brimacombe, Asghar Majeed and Geoffrey Hill, resigned from the council's leading Conservative group in protest over the remarks.

An online petition calling for the action to be halted raised thousands of signatures (PA)

The motion that will be voted on, which was proposed by former Tory councillor Claire Stretton, reads: "To pass a Motion of No Confidence in the Leader of the Council following events during the week commencing 1/1/18, instigated by statements on Twitter and a letter to the Police & Crime Commissioner by Cllr Simon Dudley, that have brought the council and councillors into disrepute."

Mr Dudley later apologised for his comments and said he was not referring to genuine homeless people, and that he regretted referring to Harry and Ms Markle's wedding at the time.

The full council will meet from 7.30pm at the Town Hall in Maidenhead.