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August 4, 2011 5:55 PM

Brentwood's Lib Dem leader Cllr David Kendall announced this week that he had won an out of court libel action against the Brentwood & Ongar Cllr David KendallConservative Association. Cllr Kendall mounted his legal challenge following the distribution of a Conservative leaflet last year across his County Division entitled the "Big Lib Dem Let down". In the leaflet which related to a Standards Board case brought against his colleague Lib Dem Cllr Barry Aspinell it said the "Lib Dem leader condones misleading of local residents" It also inferred that Cllr Kendall was happy to peddle dishonest propaganda and attempt to hoodwink local people.

Cllr Kendall took the libel action because he believed the comments were defamatory and damaging to his reputation.

After long protracted legal discussions between the two sides and the announcement that Cllr Barry Aspinell had won his appeal and been cleared of any wrong doing by the Standards Board for England, the Brentwood & Ongar Conservative Association asked for a mediation meeting and decided to settle out of court with Cllr Kendall on the following basis:

1) A full personal apology to Cllr Kendall
2) To deliver a Retraction and Apology leaflet for Cllr Kendall to every home in Brentwood West, Brentwood South and Warley
3) To pay Cllr Kendall damages and his legal costs.

Included within the Retraction and Apology leaflet is the following statement from the Chairman of the Brentwood & Ongar Conservative Association "We hereby advise that such allegations were in fact false and were wrongly made for political gain. We apologise unreservedly to Cllr David Kendall for the inappropriate content of the leaflet and for any distress caused to him".

Speaking about the case David Kendall said "I was shocked and disappointed to see such a defamatory leaflet delivered to the residents in the three wards that make up my County division. I decided to take legal action on my own to protect by reputation as a local councillor and as a small business man serving the local community and I am delighted to have won. This case was never about the money, it was about the principle of standing up for my rights against the Brentwood & Ongar Conservative Association and being prepared to go all the way to the High Court if necessary to protect my name".

Cllr David Kendall
Leader of the Liberal Democrat Group
Brentwood Borough Council
Essex County Councillor - Brentwood South Division
Mobile: 07768 667824