John McLellan: Spirit of Eric and Ernie visits Edinburgh council chamber

Councillor Chas Booth
Councillor Chas Booth
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It was the last council meeting of the year and Green Councillor Chas Booth was in a generous mood.

In the spirit of the Morecambe and Wise Christmas Show, Councillor Booth was the comedy gift which just kept giving.

Leaping to his feet in full panto baddie mode, he demanded that the ‘Questions to the Council Leader’ slot should be halted because it had overrun its allotted 40 minutes. Not so, said Lord Provost Frank Ross who had been running a stopwatch and to the second told Cllr Booth there were still more than two minutes to go.

And then in an even more hilarious outburst he accused the Conservative group of “meddling” in council officers’ business. Really? Like we shouldn’t ask questions? It’s as if the tram disaster, the Cameron House education affair, and the statutory repairs scandal had never happened.

Tail well and truly between his legs, poor Chas had to get it all off his chest later the same day by posting a blog in which he said: “I used a phrase which, on reflection, wasn’t useful. I said that councillors shouldn’t ‘meddle in the work of officers’.”

It’s been a long year for us all, Chas. Have a lie down and enjoy the holiday.