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Statement from Cllr Graham Wilson, Chair of Cambridgeshire County Council’s Audit and Accounts Committee

31 May 2022

I am pleased that this committee has finally been able to release the Mazars report (Link) which last February completed the audit process into the issues arising from former Councillor Roger Hickford’s tenancy of Manor Farm, Girton.

The report is redacted only where it deals with personal information where the Council has been advised it does not have an appropriate lawful basis to process personal data as required by the UK GDPR and Data Protection Act 2018.

The publication in February of the investigation into the Councillors Code of Conduct covered the issue of councillors conduct, and last July we updated on the management action on all the other recommendations made. So while the report puts very little new information into the public domain, it fulfils the promise made by the Joint Administration of this Council following last May’s election, to publish the report as soon as we were legally able to do so.

The issues that this audit considered cover a situation which should never have been allowed to occur – and have led to a range of additional strengthening measures being agreed by this council to prevent any reoccurrence.

It is essential that the Council, and the Audit Committee keeps these measures under regular review to ensure that they are completed and that they continue to offer the necessary safeguards.

I would like to thank Mazars for their work, and also the officers who have worked so diligently to bring this report together in a legal and proper way, and to those councillors at whose insistence it was begun and who have never lost sight of the need for it to be put into the public domain.