My sources told me last week that the Gateshead Council Labour Group meeting before the council budget meeting was a great deal more heated than we had first been led to believe. I am reliably informed that an amendment was proposed that had curious similarities to our amendment we were putting together down the corridor in our own Lib Dem group meeting.
Whilst the Leader of the Council, Mick Henry, was finally able to see off this amendment, he had to pay the price of a significant concession to those who may be interested in seeing someone else take on his job were he to fall under the proverbial wheels of the runaway no. 7 bus. Whether or not that same bus will be sent in Mick's direction by those on the "left" is still to be seen.
Mick's last minute change to the budget was cobbled together in such a hurry that he hadn't even sorted the wording of it by the start of the cabinet meeting the next day. He had to give a verbal explanation, rather than have anything written down. I had never seen Mick looking so chastened before. I am informed however that this bruising Labour bust up may be repeated after 22nd May.