ROWS at an Isle of Wight Council meeting last night (Tuesday) led one member to compare the situation to the Russian invasion of Ukraine.

At the authority's planning committee meeting, tempers flared between two councillors when they continually butted heads — chair of the committee, Cllr Michael Lilley and Cllr Geoff Brodie, who is the council's chairman.

The meeting was adjourned twice to sort out points of contention between the pair, who in recent years been allies in a short-lived '1957 Group' within County Hall.

The arguments led to an outburst during one of the pauses from Cllr Vanessa Churchman.

Before leaving the meeting to attend another, Cllr Churchman said: "You can understand why there is a war in Ukraine, because when you men get together you are bloody impossible.

"I could spit. Democratic process my foot. Having slanging matches does not solve anything."

The outburst followed a heated discussion around a proposed code of practice review for the planning committee.

Cllr Brodie was against the review and criticised Cllr Lilley's committee chairmanship, also alleging the Ryde councillor had made libellous comments about him in an email to planning committee members about West Acre Park.

He said if Cllr Lilley was going to behave like that, he needed to learn how to stand up to him instead of being a coward.

Tempers boiled over again before a motion to reconsider the West Acre development was heard, with Cllr Brodie wishing to raise ten points of information, before it could be discussed.

One point revolved around the phrase 'Planning Protocols Working Group', in the motion, with Cllr Brodie not being able to find mention to it anywhere in the council.

A working group had been approved earlier in the meeting, after acting in an informal capacity previously, to deal with the code of practice review, but in the papers debated it was not officially dubbed the Planning Protocols Working Group.

Cllr Brodie repeatedly asked where that was mentioned, and asked how it could be used in the motion when no such group existed.

He was told by Cllr Lilley the ruling had been made and to move on, although he did not.

Cllr Lilley tried to 'silence' Cllr Brodie — allowing him to stay in the meeting but not be heard — and was seconded by Cllr Dave Adams, before Cllr Matt Price intervened.

Cllr Price said while Cllr Brodie was being unreasonable, he was not willing to silence another member.

Instead, Cllr Price proposed the meeting be adjourned and said: "We are putting the staff, public and press under far too much tonight. No one wants to sit here and listen to this or be amongst this any longer. I certainly don't."

The West Acre motion will now be bought to another planning committee meeting.

Tensions escalated further after the meeting when angry words were exchanged resulting in security escorts for both councillors.