Worcester Park councillor Stephen Fenwick refuses to break silence amid calls for his resignation after racial abuse conviction

Surrey Comet: Councillor Stephen Fenwick attacked a barman at a pub in Charing Cross station Councillor Stephen Fenwick attacked a barman at a pub in Charing Cross station

A disgraced councillor guilty of a racial attack on a barman is refusing to break his silence amid increasing calls for his resignation.

Worcester Park Councillor Stephen Fenwick was last week sentenced for racially abusing and attacking a barman at a central London pub in January.

He has voluntarily resigned the Liberal Democrat whip and is no longer a member of the Sutton Lib Dem party but he has not resigned as a councillor, meaning his is an independent member of Sutton Council.

The Sutton Guardian has made repeated attempts to interview Coun Fenwick, who is banned from several of the pubs in Sutton town centre, but so far all have failed.

Under current law, councillors can only be stripped of their position of they are given a prison sentence - but rival politicians have called for Coun Fenwick to voluntarily stand down.

Conservative candidate for Sutton South Jason Hughes said: "I read with shock of the conviction of Liberal Democrat councillor Stephen Fenwick for his drunken racist attack.

"However, my shock is not confined only to Councillor Fenwick’s conviction, but also to his refusal to resign."

Prospective Labour Party candidate for Sutton and Cheam Emily Brothers said: "I’m left with no option other than to call on Councillor Fenwick to resign immediately."

It is understood the national Lib Dem party is reviewing Coun Fenwicks membership.


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Comments (18)

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8:42am Fri 21 Mar 14

PeterM says...

The elections are in May, it's the end of March. What's the point of him resigning now?

I don't agree with what he has done, but to call for his resignation with only six weeks to go, is pointless and just a waste of public money.
The elections are in May, it's the end of March. What's the point of him resigning now? I don't agree with what he has done, but to call for his resignation with only six weeks to go, is pointless and just a waste of public money. PeterM
  • Score: 15

8:47am Fri 21 Mar 14

concernedofkingston says...

Peter M fair point about 6 week time frame but what about the lost opportunity for him to show some remorse/integrity/sh
ame?
Peter M fair point about 6 week time frame but what about the lost opportunity for him to show some remorse/integrity/sh ame? concernedofkingston
  • Score: -7

9:29am Fri 21 Mar 14

PeterM says...

concernedofkingston wrote:
Peter M fair point about 6 week time frame but what about the lost opportunity for him to show some remorse/integrity/sh

ame?
concernedofkingston - Good point also.
[quote][p][bold]concernedofkingston[/bold] wrote: Peter M fair point about 6 week time frame but what about the lost opportunity for him to show some remorse/integrity/sh ame?[/p][/quote]concernedofkingston - Good point also. PeterM
  • Score: -6

9:53am Fri 21 Mar 14

Tony from Surbiton says...

PeterM wrote:
The elections are in May, it's the end of March. What's the point of him resigning now?

I don't agree with what he has done, but to call for his resignation with only six weeks to go, is pointless and just a waste of public money.
It's a waste of public money to keep paying this racist thug until election day.
[quote][p][bold]PeterM[/bold] wrote: The elections are in May, it's the end of March. What's the point of him resigning now? I don't agree with what he has done, but to call for his resignation with only six weeks to go, is pointless and just a waste of public money.[/p][/quote]It's a waste of public money to keep paying this racist thug until election day. Tony from Surbiton
  • Score: -1

10:25am Fri 21 Mar 14

al the taxi says...

has this chap got a drink problem?,ive seen him a few times a bit wobbly and even asleep in a pub in Sutton high street .also as the report says he is barred from several pubs,maybe he cant handle his drink.
has this chap got a drink problem?,ive seen him a few times a bit wobbly and even asleep in a pub in Sutton high street .also as the report says he is barred from several pubs,maybe he cant handle his drink. al the taxi
  • Score: 3

12:01pm Fri 21 Mar 14

AndyLikeGandhi says...

here's an idea; how about we stop giving him all this publicity, ignore him and see what happens in May?
the electorate are clever and, if he is deluded enough to stand for election again, I trust that they will make the right decision.
this whole debacle says a lot about him and particularly the integrity of his party. I'm saddened that they felt they could just sweep this whole matter under the carpet. makes me wonder what other things they've (successfully) kept from us...
here's an idea; how about we stop giving him all this publicity, ignore him and see what happens in May? the electorate are clever and, if he is deluded enough to stand for election again, I trust that they will make the right decision. this whole debacle says a lot about him and particularly the integrity of his party. I'm saddened that they felt they could just sweep this whole matter under the carpet. makes me wonder what other things they've (successfully) kept from us... AndyLikeGandhi
  • Score: -6

1:01pm Fri 21 Mar 14

Another Day says...

How he can insult someone with a face only a mother could love is beyond me
How he can insult someone with a face only a mother could love is beyond me Another Day
  • Score: -15

1:08pm Fri 21 Mar 14

PeterM says...

Tony from Surbiton wrote:
PeterM wrote:
The elections are in May, it's the end of March. What's the point of him resigning now?

I don't agree with what he has done, but to call for his resignation with only six weeks to go, is pointless and just a waste of public money.
It's a waste of public money to keep paying this racist thug until election day.
If this had happened a year ago, then I'd agree, the right thing to do would be resign his position. But we are talking about less than two months to go before the next lot of local elections.

Let him disappear and he'll soon be forgotten about. He clearly has issues, and perhaps needs to seek professional help. The most difficult part is to admit it to yourself and then to ask for assistance.
[quote][p][bold]Tony from Surbiton[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]PeterM[/bold] wrote: The elections are in May, it's the end of March. What's the point of him resigning now? I don't agree with what he has done, but to call for his resignation with only six weeks to go, is pointless and just a waste of public money.[/p][/quote]It's a waste of public money to keep paying this racist thug until election day.[/p][/quote]If this had happened a year ago, then I'd agree, the right thing to do would be resign his position. But we are talking about less than two months to go before the next lot of local elections. Let him disappear and he'll soon be forgotten about. He clearly has issues, and perhaps needs to seek professional help. The most difficult part is to admit it to yourself and then to ask for assistance. PeterM
  • Score: 17

1:47pm Fri 21 Mar 14

CPN says...

Another Day - that comment is unnecessary, unkind and totally irrelevant
Another Day - that comment is unnecessary, unkind and totally irrelevant CPN
  • Score: 14

2:12pm Fri 21 Mar 14

Niki R says...

What's shocking is the Lib Dems failure to support, act or deal with this situation long ago.

Because Mr Fenwick pleaded guilty, the details of the assault have not been made public. I think that in light of comments about longstanding concerns regarding Councillor Fenwick's behaviour made by his Lib Dem colleague Councillor Lester Holloway on Twitter, this may be kinder to a man who is clearly experiencing some serious problems.

It is disappointing that Councillor Fenwick has still not apologised for his conduct, or resigned as a councillor.

I see that the Lib Dem whip has now been withdrawn from him and he is sitting is an independent, though I have grave concerns about why it has taken so long for the Lib Dems in Sutton to act, and why they failed to intervene before now to help a colleague who was so obviously in distress.

Councillor Fenwick continued to act as a Lib Dem councillor for some time after his arrest in January. He was described officially as such on February 14th at the Scrutiny Meeting. This illustrates that even after his arrest the Lib Dem group did not immediately suspend him- something that would have reassured people in Sutton that they took the allegation seriously, and would have given Councillor Fenwick time and space to seek support and help.

It would have been understandable for the Lib Dem group to support him if he had pleaded not guilty, but he admitted the charge and received a suspended sentence.

As such, doubt must be cast on the judgement of the Lib Dem group for not acting to suspend him immediately after his arrest, but instead waiting until a few days before his court appearance. Sutton's residents have been deceived and the whole affair reminds us of the cut throat and cack-handed way the Lib Dems conduct themselves on our Council.

There should be no room for racism in our borough, and certainly not on our Council; the two month delay in acting to address the issue shows the Lib Dems to be weak and inept on issues of equality.

Despite his conduct, which I condemn, I wish Mr Fenwick well and hope he receives more practical and effective help than that offered by his Lib Dem colleagues.
What's shocking is the Lib Dems failure to support, act or deal with this situation long ago. Because Mr Fenwick pleaded guilty, the details of the assault have not been made public. I think that in light of comments about longstanding concerns regarding Councillor Fenwick's behaviour made by his Lib Dem colleague Councillor Lester Holloway on Twitter, this may be kinder to a man who is clearly experiencing some serious problems. It is disappointing that Councillor Fenwick has still not apologised for his conduct, or resigned as a councillor. I see that the Lib Dem whip has now been withdrawn from him and he is sitting is an independent, though I have grave concerns about why it has taken so long for the Lib Dems in Sutton to act, and why they failed to intervene before now to help a colleague who was so obviously in distress. Councillor Fenwick continued to act as a Lib Dem councillor for some time after his arrest in January. He was described officially as such on February 14th at the Scrutiny Meeting. This illustrates that even after his arrest the Lib Dem group did not immediately suspend him- something that would have reassured people in Sutton that they took the allegation seriously, and would have given Councillor Fenwick time and space to seek support and help. It would have been understandable for the Lib Dem group to support him if he had pleaded not guilty, but he admitted the charge and received a suspended sentence. As such, doubt must be cast on the judgement of the Lib Dem group for not acting to suspend him immediately after his arrest, but instead waiting until a few days before his court appearance. Sutton's residents have been deceived and the whole affair reminds us of the cut throat and cack-handed way the Lib Dems conduct themselves on our Council. There should be no room for racism in our borough, and certainly not on our Council; the two month delay in acting to address the issue shows the Lib Dems to be weak and inept on issues of equality. Despite his conduct, which I condemn, I wish Mr Fenwick well and hope he receives more practical and effective help than that offered by his Lib Dem colleagues. Niki R
  • Score: 2

2:18pm Fri 21 Mar 14

GreenBrown says...

"the electorate are clever"

That did make me chuckle. That must be why they fall for the same old promises every time. Generally speaking the electorate are beyond stupid.
"the electorate are clever" That did make me chuckle. That must be why they fall for the same old promises every time. Generally speaking the electorate are beyond stupid. GreenBrown
  • Score: -3

7:22pm Fri 21 Mar 14

OhThisBloodyPC says...

It sounds like he had an argument with a barman.

The row was nothing to do with race, but probably something to do with not getting served.

So it wasn't racially aggravated or racially motivated.

Yes, it sounds like he acted like a yob and yes he said something which could be offensive.

The man should be punished for disorder and the racist remarks didn't help his case. But come on, do we really think he was motivated by spite? I think he was motivated by his addiction to drink.

I find this sanctimonious posturing about racism appalling.

There's a world apart from someone who says something stupid in the spur of the moment and someone who is genuinely so full of loathing for their fellow man that it influences their behaviour.
It sounds like he had an argument with a barman. The row was nothing to do with race, but probably something to do with not getting served. So it wasn't racially aggravated or racially motivated. Yes, it sounds like he acted like a yob and yes he said something which could be offensive. The man should be punished for disorder and the racist remarks didn't help his case. But come on, do we really think he was motivated by spite? I think he was motivated by his addiction to drink. I find this sanctimonious posturing about racism appalling. There's a world apart from someone who says something stupid in the spur of the moment and someone who is genuinely so full of loathing for their fellow man that it influences their behaviour. OhThisBloodyPC
  • Score: -2

1:05pm Sat 22 Mar 14

Michael Pantlin says...

He is now adopting ostrich behaviour. Can you trust the judgement of such a man who now supports our being forced to breathe the exhaust from the private Beddington incinerator?
He is now adopting ostrich behaviour. Can you trust the judgement of such a man who now supports our being forced to breathe the exhaust from the private Beddington incinerator? Michael Pantlin
  • Score: 2

8:19am Sun 23 Mar 14

Liberals are deluded says...

The "whitey bashing brigade" were foaming at the mouth when this story came to light! Listen to you bunch of desperadoes ... You just couldn't wait to bash him!
The "whitey bashing brigade" were foaming at the mouth when this story came to light! Listen to you bunch of desperadoes ... You just couldn't wait to bash him! Liberals are deluded
  • Score: -8

6:15am Sun 30 Mar 14

Dr Martin says...

Liberals are deluded wrote:
The "whitey bashing brigade" were foaming at the mouth when this story came to light! Listen to you bunch of desperadoes ... You just couldn't wait to bash him!
You've gone quiet
[quote][p][bold]Liberals are deluded[/bold] wrote: The "whitey bashing brigade" were foaming at the mouth when this story came to light! Listen to you bunch of desperadoes ... You just couldn't wait to bash him![/p][/quote]You've gone quiet Dr Martin
  • Score: -1

11:04am Sun 30 Mar 14

amanda29a says...

I would like to say I have had the privilege of having Stephen Fenwick as a councillor for my area in Worcester Park and can say he is a kind and caring person who took the time to address and help sort out the criminal activity and vandalism myself and my neighbours were having to tolerate at Dorchester Road and finally got it sorted out. I am not surprised this incident happened though as drink changes peoples personality and Mr Fenwick has obviously had a drink problem for a good while I have been told by people who have worked closely with him that they were aware of this and did nothing to help or organise Rehabilitation which is available in our borough so shame on those who may of prevented this from happening
I would like to say I have had the privilege of having Stephen Fenwick as a councillor for my area in Worcester Park and can say he is a kind and caring person who took the time to address and help sort out the criminal activity and vandalism myself and my neighbours were having to tolerate at Dorchester Road and finally got it sorted out. I am not surprised this incident happened though as drink changes peoples personality and Mr Fenwick has obviously had a drink problem for a good while I have been told by people who have worked closely with him that they were aware of this and did nothing to help or organise Rehabilitation which is available in our borough so shame on those who may of prevented this from happening amanda29a
  • Score: -2

11:07am Sun 30 Mar 14

amanda29a says...

Michael Pantlin wrote:
He is now adopting ostrich behaviour. Can you trust the judgement of such a man who now supports our being forced to breathe the exhaust from the private Beddington incinerator?
There is good and bad points about everyone
[quote][p][bold]Michael Pantlin[/bold] wrote: He is now adopting ostrich behaviour. Can you trust the judgement of such a man who now supports our being forced to breathe the exhaust from the private Beddington incinerator?[/p][/quote]There is good and bad points about everyone amanda29a
  • Score: 1

11:09am Sun 30 Mar 14

amanda29a says...

Niki R wrote:
What's shocking is the Lib Dems failure to support, act or deal with this situation long ago.

Because Mr Fenwick pleaded guilty, the details of the assault have not been made public. I think that in light of comments about longstanding concerns regarding Councillor Fenwick's behaviour made by his Lib Dem colleague Councillor Lester Holloway on Twitter, this may be kinder to a man who is clearly experiencing some serious problems.

It is disappointing that Councillor Fenwick has still not apologised for his conduct, or resigned as a councillor.

I see that the Lib Dem whip has now been withdrawn from him and he is sitting is an independent, though I have grave concerns about why it has taken so long for the Lib Dems in Sutton to act, and why they failed to intervene before now to help a colleague who was so obviously in distress.

Councillor Fenwick continued to act as a Lib Dem councillor for some time after his arrest in January. He was described officially as such on February 14th at the Scrutiny Meeting. This illustrates that even after his arrest the Lib Dem group did not immediately suspend him- something that would have reassured people in Sutton that they took the allegation seriously, and would have given Councillor Fenwick time and space to seek support and help.

It would have been understandable for the Lib Dem group to support him if he had pleaded not guilty, but he admitted the charge and received a suspended sentence.

As such, doubt must be cast on the judgement of the Lib Dem group for not acting to suspend him immediately after his arrest, but instead waiting until a few days before his court appearance. Sutton's residents have been deceived and the whole affair reminds us of the cut throat and cack-handed way the Lib Dems conduct themselves on our Council.

There should be no room for racism in our borough, and certainly not on our Council; the two month delay in acting to address the issue shows the Lib Dems to be weak and inept on issues of equality.

Despite his conduct, which I condemn, I wish Mr Fenwick well and hope he receives more practical and effective help than that offered by his Lib Dem colleagues.
I could not agree more
[quote][p][bold]Niki R[/bold] wrote: What's shocking is the Lib Dems failure to support, act or deal with this situation long ago. Because Mr Fenwick pleaded guilty, the details of the assault have not been made public. I think that in light of comments about longstanding concerns regarding Councillor Fenwick's behaviour made by his Lib Dem colleague Councillor Lester Holloway on Twitter, this may be kinder to a man who is clearly experiencing some serious problems. It is disappointing that Councillor Fenwick has still not apologised for his conduct, or resigned as a councillor. I see that the Lib Dem whip has now been withdrawn from him and he is sitting is an independent, though I have grave concerns about why it has taken so long for the Lib Dems in Sutton to act, and why they failed to intervene before now to help a colleague who was so obviously in distress. Councillor Fenwick continued to act as a Lib Dem councillor for some time after his arrest in January. He was described officially as such on February 14th at the Scrutiny Meeting. This illustrates that even after his arrest the Lib Dem group did not immediately suspend him- something that would have reassured people in Sutton that they took the allegation seriously, and would have given Councillor Fenwick time and space to seek support and help. It would have been understandable for the Lib Dem group to support him if he had pleaded not guilty, but he admitted the charge and received a suspended sentence. As such, doubt must be cast on the judgement of the Lib Dem group for not acting to suspend him immediately after his arrest, but instead waiting until a few days before his court appearance. Sutton's residents have been deceived and the whole affair reminds us of the cut throat and cack-handed way the Lib Dems conduct themselves on our Council. There should be no room for racism in our borough, and certainly not on our Council; the two month delay in acting to address the issue shows the Lib Dems to be weak and inept on issues of equality. Despite his conduct, which I condemn, I wish Mr Fenwick well and hope he receives more practical and effective help than that offered by his Lib Dem colleagues.[/p][/quote]I could not agree more amanda29a
  • Score: 0

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