Horsham District Council’s Lib Dem leader resigns as head of group

The leader of the Liberal Democrats on Horsham District Council has resigned as head of the group.

Monday, 3rd February 2014, 8:58 am
David Holmes, pictured in 2011, photo by Derek Martin

David Holmes (LDem, Horsham Park) has served as his party’s leader on the council since 2004 with one short break, but decided with his wife that now was the right time to call it a day.

Having put himself forward for election in 2003 to ‘give something back to the community’ he told the County Times that the duties of a councillor could seem like a full-time job sometimes working 38-hour weeks.

Dr Holmes said: “Overall I have enjoyed it, overall it has been a privilege and it’s provided an opportunity to influence a lot that happens in the council.

“I have been able to talk frankly with leaders and the cabinet members which I think is very helpful.”

He said he was looking forward to spending more time with his grandchildren, and having his evenings and weekends to himself.

He added: “I have decided I do not have the time anymore. I can’t put that time in and I have been toying with the idea of when to stop and I just thought now was the right time.”

He continued: “My motto is flat out or flat out. I do something 100 per cent or not at all.”

Key achievements during his time as Lib Dem leader had been the reinstatement of advisory groups to cabinet members, and the clout of the Accounts, Audit, and Governance Committee, which he chairs.

However he did express frustration, having worked as a managing director up until his retirement, that HDC was not run like a business.

When the district council elections are next held in 2015, he said he was not thinking of standing again.

He added: “I think there has to be a bit of movement in terms of councillors.”

He expected a new Lib Dem leader to be chosen in the next few weeks.