NEWPORT West Tory councillor, Chris Whitehouse, has announced today he has suspended all his involvement with the Isle of Wight Conservative Association.

Cllr Whitehouse, who was twice elected as a councillor to represent the ward of Newport West, had previously said he would find it 'impossible' to serve as a Conservative if former Isle of Wight Council leader, David Pugh, was elected as chairman of the association.

Mr Pugh was elected chairman of the association following its annual meeting in Newport on Thursday.

In a statement, Cllr Whitehouse said: “In light of recent developments, I am, with immediate effect, suspending all my active involvement with the Isle of Wight Conservative Association for a minimum period of 6 months, after which I shall review the situation, taking into account, in particular, the extent to which its Officers comply with the Conservative Party’s Code of Conduct for Association Officers. That Code of Conduct specifically requires Association officers to adhere to the Nolan Principles of public life, and so requires the officers to declare their interests, as I declare mine in several public registers, some statutory, some voluntary. In the meantime, I shall continue to serve the residents of the Newport West Ward to the best of my abilities, as I always have, on a non-party-political basis.”