Councillor removed after 'loss of confidence' and not attending meetings

The building in Ryburgh

The council say ‘illegal building work’ was in progress at 19 Station Road in Ryburgh. - Credit: Google Maps

A parish councillor who lost the confidence of his peers has lost his seat after failing to attend a council meeting in the last eight months.

Christopher Buxton was removed from Ryburgh Parish Council on February 23 having not attended a council meeting since June 10, 2020.

Mr Buxton also "lost the confidence" of his peers due to trying to justify the work he undertook on his property. The council say ‘illegal building work’ was in progress at 19 Station Road in the village.

The council said he had heightened a room in his building for accommodation, but the property is located in a conservation area and he had no planning permission.

The councillor cited article 61 of the Magna Carta to justify his actions, which says 'allowed for lawful dissent and rebellion'.

In its statement, the parish council said, “Ryburgh Parish Council no longer has confidence in Councillor Christopher Buxton to carry out his role. 

“His allegiance to Article 61 of the Magna Carta has meant that he is unable to support elements of our legal system. 

the Memorial Hall in Fakenham

Ryburgh Parish Council would meet at the Memorial Hall before their meetings moved to Zoom. - Credit: Google Maps

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"Article 61 of the Magna Carta is not recognised by our legal system or any offices of governance.

“Councillor Buxton has not given the electors the opportunity to either support or reject his new-found allegiance but he has created anxiety and unhappiness within the parish and risks bringing the parish council into disrepute.   

“He is, therefore, required to stand down immediately from his office to allow a new candidate to be elected/co-opted at the very soonest opportunity.”

North Norfolk District council confirmed the property is subject to an enforcement notice, which is currently under appeal.

A council spokesperson said, “Currently, NNDC has not received a Code of Conduct complaint on the matter, and we are not aware of whether he is presently a member of that parish council.

“Moving forward if the Councillor has now left the Parish Council any complaints received will not be progressed as they must be against a “sitting” councillor.”

Mr Buxton has been contacted several times for comment.