We at Debunking have been gathering more information since the announcement at a meeting of the full council on Tuesday 30th Jan ’24, that the formal coalition with Tamworth’s ‘independent’ future group headed by Councillor Danny Cook has fallen through. It was worth the wait, since we now know why the talks failed thanks to the loose lips of a senior female Tory party officer who is apparently quite happy to leak to anyone who will listen (we know their gender thanks to the inadvertant use of ‘she’ from our source).

It seems that crunch talks were held with Councillor Cook to discuss terms, one of those was for him (and this was apparently a ‘red line’) to re-join the Conservative party along with an option for his other members to do so if they wished. This would particularly clear the way for Cook to stand and defend his current Trinity seat as a Conservative, which he is clearly now concerned he will lose. Unsurprisingly Cooks’ membership application was roundly rejected at a heated party executive according to the female senior officer who is apparently telling everyone, which is how it has ended up on our page (we don’t know how many ‘senior’ female party officers there are so we can’t narrow it down further sadly). The Independent Future group has spent the last few years since they quit the Tories fighting elections against the Tory party that got them elected in the first place, causing heavy losses for them. This as well as their leader slagging off the party in the press over the Chris Pincher debacle. We have also been told that other demands were for Cook to be made Deputy leader of the Council, as well as having an incumbent Tory Councillor stand aside in May’s elections to allow Cook’s wife former Councillor Michelle Cook to stand instead.

Quite why Cook imagined that there would be a different outcome to this is beyond us here at Debunking. This is a man who apparently worked unhindered with Chris Pincher with no ill feeling for over a decade (according to sources) since an incident whereby Pincher allegedly ‘sexually harassed’ him. Cook only decided to go to the police regarding the allegations some time after his press tour in 2022. Make of that what you will. We have been unable to establish whether anything came of the investigation.

What does that mean for the Conservatives, since co-leader of the Tory group and Council Thomas Jay was unable to close a deal with the Independent Future group. We can only guess the breakaway group will continue to try and hurt their former party colleagues by trying and failing to get their members (most of whom are family) elected, with the side effect of electing new Labour Councillors, which has already happened in previous elections. It is apparent this group are desparate to re-join the Tories apparently now realising they stand little chance of being elected again.

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