By David Spereall, local democracy reporter
A Conservative councillor has been placed under investigation by his party amid an allegation of misconduct relating to a social media post.
Councillor Simon Seary, who’s represented the Pudsey ward on Leeds City Council since 2018, has been suspended by the council’s opposition Tory group.
It follows a post on Councillor Seary’s public Facebook page on November 20, which apparently took aim at his ward colleague and fellow Conservative, Councillor Trish Smith.
On Monday, a spokesman for the Conservative group said Councillor Seary had been “temporarily suspended” from the group and is “thus unable to attend group meetings.”
They added: “This is pending an investigation into an allegation of misconduct against him relating to a recent post on Facebook.”
In a separate Facebook post on Friday, Councillor Seary claimed he’d had the Tory whip suspended and would have to sit as an independent councillor while the investigation takes place.
However, the Conservative group insists this is not the case and that he “remains a full member of the group”, albeit he is barred from group meetings while the probe takes place.
In his post on Friday, Councillor Seary said he would “continue to work hard” for people in the Pudsey area.
He added: “I shall not make any further statement at this time, but I’m still available and will be working hard for my constituents.”
Councillor Seary’s wife Dawn is also a Conservative councillor for Pudsey.