This has to be quite possibly the funniest thing I have read all day. Apparently, a Lib Dem councillor in Hexham called Derek Kennedy (pictured) meant to call his colleague Dougie Watkin but instead called the leader of the Tories on Tynedale Council, Michael Walton and left the following answerphone message.
"Dougie it’s Derek. I’ve been having a think about this, you know, this retention of payments allowance thing at Tynedale. I was thinking because if this gets out it’s obvious all the officers and other districts are going to do the same.Whoops! Guess he needs to read that mobile phone manual again. Is this what Clegg means by going beyond their comfort zone?
Should we put a motion in at county hall saying we don’t want any recruitment allowances in Northumberland County Council because we recognise that it would be divisive for other staff? And obviously the current status, Tynedale, at Northumberland County Council’s £230m of debt that we shouldn’t pay any such allowances."
"I think if we dress it properly it, you know it’ll make it as though we’re protecting the staff as opposed to giving the officers a big, bloody big pay out. Give us a ring, tell us what you think. Cheers now, tada."