No action will be taken following investigation into Dronfield councillor’s ‘racist’ retweet

An investigation into a councillor’s retweet of a video seen as containing racist material has concluded that no action needs to be taken against her as she did not do so in her civic role.

By Christina Massey
Tuesday, 1st February 2022, 3:41 pm
Updated Tuesday, 1st February 2022, 3:51 pm

In October, Councillor Victoria Kirk was suspended from Dronfield Town Council after she retweeted a video entitled ‘Life in a Northern Town’, which portrayed members of the Asian community in a negative light.

After receiving complaints from members of the public, North East Derbyshire District Council (NEDDC) carried out a formal investigation into the matter.

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Victoria Kirk is a town councillor for Dronfield.

A spokesperson for NEDDC stated: “After a thorough assessment into the matter, the Code of Conduct does not cover the actions of a councillor in their private life.

“The actions complained of were conducted in a private capacity and this means they are outside the Code of Conduct/Localism Act 2011 provisions.

“Accordingly no action has been taken.”

However Paul Shipley, who was one of the Dronfield residents who complained about the tweet, says he feels ‘deflated’ by the ruling.

The 53-year-old commented: “When I saw it I just thought ‘that’s disgusting’.

“When I sat and thought about it I thought ‘that isn’t right – as someone who purports to represent me as a Dronfield resident to be sharing that kind of filth’.

Mr Shipley continued “It wasn’t free speech, it was hate speech.”

The Derbyshire Times has been in contact with Councillor Kirk and is awaiting a response from her, as well as an update on her status as a Dronfield town councillor.