Councillor subjected to unwarranted “vile tirade”

Parish Councillor, Nick Speakman has been sent a series of abusive and threatening emails by local Ollerton Notary, Simon Armstrong.

“I’d never met, spoken to or even emailed Mr Armstrong” said Cllr Speakman, “So I don’t know what I’ve done to justify this vile tirade of profanities”

The issue seems to have arisen when Cllr Speakman asked one of the trustees of Ollerton Educational Foundation, Andrew Needham, if all three trustees would be willing to come to a meeting with several parish councillors at the village hall.

“We’ve had a number of parishioners contact us, upset, worried and concerned about the potential loss of ‘The Schoolhouse’ on School Lane and wanted to talk to the trustees” said Chair of the parish council, Geoff Mason

Shortly after all three trustees agreed to meet with parish councillors, Cllr Speakman seems to have been cc’d into a reply Simon Armstrong sent to Andrew Needham by mistake. (we’ve asterisked the swearing)

Between the three of us we should rout the ungodly !
Andrew- f*****g rude note fro Speakman! Ignore it! Cheeky b*****d sticking his nose in where he has no business to be interfering. I see the parish idiots are coming “mob-handed” 
GOOD! It will save having to repeat to them that it is NONE  of their business 
I am happy to be the forthright one if you wish

“I’m working as a parish councillor, as an unpaid volunteer and representative of the parish and in the three years I’ve been a councillor I’ve always communicated with others with the utmost respect and politeness” said Cllr Speakman. “With this in mind I decided to introduce myself to Simon and try and make light of his error.”

Hi Simon,

I look forward to meeting you on Tuesday

Best regards


Bringing his error to light, however, didn’t result in any form of apology but a second vitriolic outburst.

 Clearly unfortunate that you should see my note intended for Andrew’s eyes alone, but probably as well that you know how angry I am at your unwarranted interference in a matter where clearly that which Andrew and I are doing is exactly in line with decisions voted on at the last trustee meeting . You and your fellow councillors have clearly not been properly appraised of matters . On Tuesday you will be.
You should all be aware that Andrew is a respectable retired solicitor, and I am a practising Notary and to impugn our characters is not only disgraceful but also potentially actionable per se for defamation

“We’ve simply asked for a meeting and for them to bring some loan application documents” said Cllr Simon Saba, “I don’t see how doing that is any form of ‘defamation’, it’s all very strange and unwarranted”

“I’m not bothered about being called names”, said Cllr Speakman “I’ve a very ‘thick skin’, but I take exception to being threatened with potential legal action when I’ve done absolutely nothing wrong. Fortunately I’m a strong believer in the rule of law and since I’m innocent, I’m happy for Mr Armstrong to take whatever course he deems fit”

Subsequently at the meeting Mr Armstrong, when confronted with a perfectly innocuous letter, shouted, screamed, ripped up the letter and threw it at Cllr Brian Mellor.

“I think it is unbecoming of the role of charity trustee to behave like this” said Cllr Mellor “The charity is facing a difficult and testing time and needs calm heads to help it, not irrational and petulant outbursts like this”

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