Mary's shock as fake letter sent out in her name
A TIVERTON councillor said she was "gob-smacked" that somebody went to the trouble of faking a letter from her to send to a member of the public.
Mary Turner said she was contacted by the recipient of the letter which contained an official looking letterhead, but knew nothing about the forged document to which she referred. The letters concerned a camper van which had been parked in the Walronds, Tiverton, but Cllr Turner said she had not seen the vehicle in question.
Mystery still surrounds who fabricated the letter.
Cllr Turner, who is a town and district councillor, said: "Whoever has written the letter has done so on district council headed paper with the blue council logo and the logo of the Highways Agency next to it, so it looks very official."
She said hearing about the bogus letter had come "absolutely out of the blue" and added: "It unnerved me a bit to think that someone would go to the trouble of using my name and involving me in something I didn't know about. I have been a councillor for 47 years and this is the first time I have ever heard of something like this."
She said she received a phone call from the recipient of the letter but had not seen it until she went to the district council offices on Monday, August 12, to attend a meeting where she was given a copy.
The letter starts by saying that it has been brought to the councillor's attention that a camper van has been parked in a way that restricts access to the highway and neighbours had complained it was causing an eyesore.
The letter says Mrs Turner and an official from the Highways Agency visited the area to observe the van – a visit which never took place – and that the councillor was of the view that the condition and appearance of the vehicle was "no worse" than others in the road.
The letter concluded by saying the Highway Agency would take no further action if the vehicle was removed in seven days.
At the foot of the letter, Mrs Turner's name and 'Councillor for Westexe' were printed.
Mid Devon District Council said the recipient of the letter should go to the police.
Cllr Turner said: "If it is a letter from me, it will have my home address and be signed by me, and this letter wasn't."