There has been much rejoicing amongst the left and right following Brian Coleman’s defeat at the hands of the electorate this week. Don’t Call Me Dave admits that he was surprised at the extent of the thrashing Coleman received, but the power of the people should never be underestimated. Coleman had survived many scandals in the past, but clearly assaulting a woman crossed a line which even his most ardent supporters could not condone.
Many years ago, when Brian Coleman was plotting the downfall of the late Victor Lyon, he told DCMD “In order to rebuild, you must first destroy.” The removal of Andreas Tambourides is therefore far more significant than Coleman’s defeat if the Conservatives want to win back the seats they have just lost.
Following the Conservative victory in 2006, the council group was effectively hijacked by the gang of four – Mike Freer, Lynne Hillan, Brian Coleman and Andreas Tambourides as their enforcer. Mike Freer subsequently went off to become a one term MP in Finchley; Lynne Hillan departed for the great council chamber in the sky and Brian Coleman punched his way into the history books. Even after the allowances scandal of 2010, Tambourides trousered bucket loads of taxpayers money for doing bugger all. He claimed tens of thousands of Pounds for legal expenses even though council officers said his claim was excessive (a view shared by a Tory barrister councillor). His greed was matched only by his ego.
Brunswick Park should be a rock solid Conservative ward. In 2006, the Conservatives won with a clear 2,000 majority over Labour. By 2010, the Conservative majority had fallen to 1,500 - but still substantial for a council ward. Following Lynne Hillan’s death in 2012, her seat was lost to Labour in the by-election. The fact that Tambourides has now lost his seat as well, whilst Tory Lisa Rutter held hers, proves that the public have simply had enough of the old guard and their bullying ways.
DCMD does not wish to speak ill of the dead, but Lynne Hillan and her cohorts inflicted serious damage on the Conservative name in Barnet. The Tories have retained power by the skin of their teeth. There can be no doubt that they are now drinking in the last chance saloon. It is time for the local associations to reassert their authority over errant councillors, clear out all the dead wood and start promoting sensible Conservative policies. Councillors (and ex councillors) with their snouts in the trough should be under no illusion that their time has passed.
And as we bid Mr Tambourgreedy a fond farewell, here is a reminder from 2009 of his arrogance and contempt for the rules the rest of us have to live by (if an advert appears, click on the ‘x’ in the top right hand corner to get rid of it).