Priti Patel interprets the voter backlash at the recent local elections as an indication of the failure of her government to lead the UK out of the EU.

It can also be interpreted as a more general expression of the people's anger at an incompetent and divided government and an equally inept and muddleheaded official opposition.

It is surely no co-incidence that across the country the Conservative Party and the Labour Party together lost 1,332 seats whereas the Liberal Democrats and Greens, parties with a clear message that Brexit is bad for Britain, gained 861 seats.

Ms Patel concludes with praise for the hard working local councillors and rightly singles out Witham Town Council for standing up against the Gimsons application.

But she omits to mention it was the Conservative dominated Braintree Council that approved the application in the first place.

Allan Waight