Eastbourne Tory candidate sparks outrage with ‘Bomb Bristol‘ tweet

A Conservative candidate in the upcoming elections has sparked outrage by suggesting Bristol should have been bombed during the weekend’s demonstrations.

Tuesday, 23rd March 2021, 9:48 am
Updated Tuesday, 23rd March 2021, 9:50 am

Thousands of people were seen demonstrating against a proposed bill in the city on Sunday night and the protest led to several officers being injured, buildings vandalised and police vehicles set on fire.

Stephen Halbhuber, who is standing for the Conservative party in Eastbourne’s St Anthony’s ward in the county council elections in May, posted on his private Twitter account on Sunday night, ‘Just bomb Bristol’.

His comment prompted an angry response from followers who said it was inappropriate and unbecoming for a political party candidate hoping to get elected.

Eastbourne council leader David Tutt, who currently represents St Anthony’s ward on East Sussex County Council, said Mr Halbhuber hadn’t let just himself down but the town of Eastbourne too.

On Monday Mr Halbhuber appeared to imply his comment had been a ‘social media experiment’ but later he issued an apology.

He said, “I want to apologise unreservedly for my comments last night, and for any offence caused.

“Needless to say, it is not something that I believe, or would advocate for.

“I made them in the spur of the moment. In the cold light of day, I completely regret them.

“I have a responsibility to residents to act with propriety and tolerance. Yesterday, I fell beneath that standard, and can only apologise and promise to learn from my mistake.”

Senior Conservatives remain tight-lipped about the Twitter row and the Herald has contacted Mr Halbhuber for a comment.