'Chelsea-on-Sea' parish council chairman is told to quit or face his critics ... trends now

'Chelsea-on-Sea' parish council chairman is told to quit or face his critics ... trends now
'Chelsea-on-Sea' parish council chairman is told to quit or face his critics ... trends now

'Chelsea-on-Sea' parish council chairman is told to quit or face his critics ... trends now

A parish council chairman banned from businesses in his own community over an 'incendiary' row about second homes has been issued an ultimatum to quit or face a trial of public opinion in a village meeting.

A formal complaint has been lodged with Burnham Market Parish Council warning Dennis Clark must step down by today or the council of war will be convened.

The 77-year-old became a pariah among local businesses in the Norfolk coast tourist hotspot after giving an interview in which he was quoted saying there was 'genuine hatred' for holiday home owners who were pricing locals out of the market and the area was becoming like a 'Center Parcs'.

He has since claimed he was misrepresented in The Times article and insists he has no intention of leaving his post, complaining he is the victim of a 'witch-hunt'.

The Times has declined to comment on the matter but is understood to have received a complaint from Mr Clark.

'I've no plans to resign on the 29th or after it,' said Mr Clark, who became a parish councillor in 2022 and has been chairman for less than a year.

A formal complaint has been lodged with Burnham Market Parish Council warning Dennis Clark (pictured) must step down by today or the council of war will be convened

A formal complaint has been lodged with Burnham Market Parish Council warning Dennis Clark (pictured) must step down by today or the council of war will be convened

The 77-year-old became a pariah among local businesses in the Norfolk coast tourist hotspot (pictured) after giving an interview in which he was quoted saying there was 'genuine hatred' for holiday home owners

The 77-year-old became a pariah among local businesses in the Norfolk coast tourist hotspot (pictured) after giving an interview in which he was quoted saying there was 'genuine hatred' for holiday home owners

'My resignation is being called for without justification. It feels like a witch-hunt is being organised. I shall not resign because I've done nothing wrong.

'I'm an elected parish councillor but my appointment as chairman is made by the parish council, not by the public, and I have universal support from current and past councillors.'

He added he and his wife, Debbie, were 'reeling from the loaded comments', adding: 'She feels that she can't walk in the village, that there's going to be a feeling of hatred.'

Mr Clark said he had been shopping in Burnham Market without any issues since the news broke he would be banned by some shopkeepers.

He said: 'My wife and I don't tend to use - and I hesitate to use the words - tourist shops because they don't sell what we need, but we do buy what we need day-to-day in the village.'

The backlash has been led by Tim Roberts, who owns a restaurant, bakery, beauty salon and dog boutique in the village dubbed Chelsea-on-Sea because of the number of Londoners who have invested in holiday homes there.

He said: 'People still feel strongly about it, as I do. To me, his position is untenable.'

The businessman, who lives in the same road as Mr Clark, warned regardless of the parish council chairman's disputed quotes, it was 'full steam ahead'.

The backlash has been led by Tim Roberts (pictured), who owns a restaurant, bakery, beauty salon and dog boutique in the village dubbed Chelsea-on-Sea because of the number of Londoners who have invested in holiday homes there

The backlash has been led by Tim Roberts (pictured), who owns a restaurant, bakery, beauty salon and dog boutique in the village dubbed

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