A CITY councillor has left her group to sit as an independent.

Lisa Griffiths, who represents Alresford and Itchen Valley, has resigned from the Conservative group on the Lib-Dem controlled council.

She has concerns that her work for the Boomtown festival could embarrass the Tory group.

In a statement she said: “As you may know, some time ago I signalled my intention not to seek re-election as a councillor in May 2020 and I am already putting plans in place for my future.

“The nature of the work I will be doing, (advising organisations such as Boomtown on planning, licensing and development in and around Winchester) might possibly give rise to some complications for the Conservative group, so I feel it best to become independent.

“It has been a privilege to be a Conservative councillor and I could not be more proud of the legacy of the new sport and leisure centre delivered through the enormous efforts of a brilliant, hard working team of city council officers, external consultants and Conservative councillors. Cllr Horrill and the Conservative Group have always shown me support and kindness, the same as they do in their actions for residents, and I have faith in them to continue to do that.

"At the next election, I hope residents will look at the new sports and leisure centre as an example of what Conservatives can do, and think ‘We want more of that entrepreneurialism, vision and determination to transform facilities, of all types, across the district’.

“Residents in Alresford and Itchen Valley are still more than welcome to contact me if they need help or advice on any city council matter, as I will remain their ward councillor until the election in May 2021, (who will, I trust, be Fiona Isaacs, standing for the Conservatives; she has my full support). My ethos has always been that I serve the residents no matter their politics – that is what we are elected for. And in between time, I need to focus on earning a living!”