Welwyn Hatfield Lib Dem chair ‘forced’ to resign citing ‘no choice’ in leaked email

PUBLISHED: 10:23 27 August 2020 | UPDATED: 10:24 27 August 2020

Cllr Helen Quenet. Picture: Kevin Lines

Cllr Helen Quenet. Picture: Kevin Lines


An email by the chair of the Welwyn Hatfield Liberal Democrats to her party states she has stepped-down as she was “forced” to with “no choice”.

The email from Helen Quenet, chair of the Welwyn Hatfield Lib Dems, to members of her party. Picture: SuppliedThe email from Helen Quenet, chair of the Welwyn Hatfield Lib Dems, to members of her party. Picture: Supplied

Helen Quenet, who is a borough councillor for Welham Green and Hatfield South, announced her resignation before the party is to elect a leader in a few hours.

Cllr Quenet also sent pro-Layla Moran – one of the candidates standing for Westminster leader along with MP Ed Davey – tweets a few days prior to tendering her resignation from the official Welhat Lib Dem account, which have since been deleted.

In an email seen by The WHT which was sent to Welwyn Hatfield Lib Dems she said: “Really unhappy to be forced to do this but I really don’t have a choice.”

“I cannot give details but I don’t believe I can carry out some of the key functions as chair as things now stand.”

But the councillor has dismissed the leadership contest as reason for her sudden resignation, saying: “I have access to three twitter accounts, my own, the WelHat LD one and my business one. I frequently tweet to the wrong account and then have to delete tweets.”

Instead, she has cited personal, professional and business reasons for making the decision to tender her resignation.

She told The Welwyn Hatfield Times: “Context is everything in regards to my resignation. 2020 has been a difficult and strange year for everyone.

“The cancelled May election means double elections next year, borough and county. As I am the party agent this is going to require twice the work next May. I will also be standing as county councillor for Hatfield East Division so my plate is more than full with that and my existing borough councillor role in Welham Green and Hatfield South.

“The post of chair is very demanding of time and admin and finance heavy, which I don’t enjoy. I much prefer working with residents and helping them with their problems, that’s why I came into politics.

“Another impact of COVID-19 has been on my business. As an online business, trade has been good this year. My business is creative and I love doing it. More time at home has meant more time doing the work I love.

“I know what I want to spend my time doing and it’s not being chair.”

Leader of the Lib Dems Cllr Malcolm Cowan directed The Welwyn Hatfield Times to Cllr Quenet when we asked him for a response.

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