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Council Leader Convicted of Drink-Driving Is ‘Deeply Sorry’

Published on: 12 May, 2013
Updated on: 14 May, 2013
Cllr Stephen Mansbridge: "I am deeply sorry for this dreadful lapse of judgement..."

Cllr Stephen Mansbridge (photographed in October 2012): “I am deeply sorry for this dreadful lapse of judgement…”

Cllr Stephen Mansbridge, the Leader of Guildford Borough Council, has expressed his profound regret for driving while over the legal alcohol limit. He was stopped and arrested by the police in Farnham Road, Guildford at 11.50pm on Friday, April 12.

Cllr Mansbridge, who is 51 and lives in Tongham, pleaded guilty at Guildford Magistrates’ Court on April 30. He received a three and a half year driving ban and a £1,665 fine. His punishment was increased because of an earlier offence for which he was convicted nine years ago.

Speaking to The Guildford Dragon NEWS this evening (Sunday, May 12), Cllr Mansbridge said: “I am deeply sorry for this dreadful lapse of judgement and regret my actions in every sense possible. I am fully aware that I have caused intense embarrassment to my family, friends, political colleagues and the council and offer them all my unreserved and heartfelt apologies.

“I commend the officers of Surrey Police for acting quickly and sensibly and [I] fully accept the punishment of the court, which I did not seek to contest in any way.

“I do completely understand the impact of drink driving and can only offer my complete and utter apology for this error on my part. I will take every opportunity available to me in the future to work with our partners on drink and road safety issues.

“I fully accept that my actions set a very poor example and I want to put right what I have done by working as hard as possible for the good of all the residents of Guildford borough and the council.”

It is understood that Cllr Mansbridge, who represents the Ash South and Tongham ward for the Conservatives, is prepared to continue as the leader of Guildford Borough Council.

One party colleague said that they thought a challenge unlikely. The last leadership change occurred only eight months ago when Cllr Mansbridge took over from Cllr Tony Rooth. Some observers feel that the Conservative group at Millmead will not want another leadership change so shortly afterwards.

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Responses to Council Leader Convicted of Drink-Driving Is ‘Deeply Sorry’

  1. Doug Staniforth Reply

    May 13, 2013 at 3:38 pm

    I hope our Council Tax/Business Rates won’t be affected to offset the fine!

    • Martin Giles Reply

      May 13, 2013 at 6:05 pm

      No that, of course, would not be permissible.

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