Labour councillor slammed over sick joke about burning Margaret Thatcher

April 11, 2013 | by | 0 Comments

A Labour councillor who runs a fire authority has been slammed for sick tweets about Margaret Thatcher’s death – including macabre jibes about her BURNING.

John Edwards sparked outrage when he posted: “The passing of #thatcher Rejoice! Rejoice!” on his Twitter account on Wednesday.

But he reserved his most tasteless comments for a person who tweeted: “Probably the best way to deal with millions wanting to dance on your grave: Thatcher to be cremated”.

Margaret Thatcher on a visit to Ashford in 1973. She is regarded by most as Britain's best PM

Margaret Thatcher on a visit to Ashford in 1973. She is regarded by most as Britain’s best PM

Cllr Edwards, who is paid nearly £40,000-a-year by taxpayers, replied: “Surely the Lady’s not for burning?”

On the day of the Iron Lady’s death, the senior councillor tweeted: “Don’t expect people in towns and villiges (sic) who had the hearts ripped out of their coalfield communities to be weeping today. #thatcher”

In another tweet on the same day, he said: “Can the people who’ve been urging respect for #thatcher (even though she showed no respect for us) let us know when we can let rip again?”

As well as representing Greets Green and Lyng for the Labour party on Sandwell Council, Cllr Edwards is also the chairman of the West Midlands Fire Authority.

The posts have angered Sandwell Conservative group leader Mavis Hughes – who branded them “insensitive and disgusting”.

She fumed: “I think it’s very inappropriate and the statements should be treated with the contempts they deserve.”

Conservative Fire Authority member Tim Wright, who is deputy leader of Dudley Council, added: “It seems to me that people in positions of authority ought to carefully consider what they are broadcasting prior to pressing the send button.

“If they wish to draw attention to themselves, then do something great for Britain like Margaret Thatcher.

“There’s a time and place for things to be said. You have to be a little bit more tactful and think about what you are doing when in a position of authority.

“Also you have to think about whether you would say that to the person face to face – it’s very easy to speak ill of the dead.”

Cllr Edwards received #38,105 in taxpayer-funded allowances for his role as chairman of the West Midlands Fire Authority and his duties as a councillor last year.

Yesterday (Thurs), he defended his tweets, saying they “speak for themselves”.

Cllr Edwards has 1,957 followers on his Twitter account @JohnEdwards33.

He describes himself as: “Chair of West Midlands Fire Authority and former firefighter. Sandwell Councillor for 35 years. Allergic to bigots, very fond of my cat. My opinions of course.”

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