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Revealed: The drunken Lowestoft councillor in charge of a toddler

Theresa Gandy

Theresa Gandy

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A Lowestoft councillor who admitted being drunk in charge of a child can today be named, after she lost a High Court battle to prevent her identity being revealed.

Theresa Gandy, 35, who represented the town’s Harbour ward on Waveney District Council, tried to obtain a court order which would have prevented details of her crime being published.

But The Journal fought against the restrictions on reporting her case and, within a day of two High Court judges agreeing she could be named, Gandy, a Labour councillor since 2011, resigned her seat.

Gandy, of Lyncroft Road, Pakefield, first appeared at Lowestoft Magistrates’ Court in May last year when she admitted being drunk while in charge of a child, aged two-and-a-half, at the town’s Asda store.

She was four times the legal drink-drive limit and it was the second time Gandy, known as Tess, had been caught in similar circumstances, having been cautioned in August 2011.

Magistrates fined her £100, and ordered her to pay costs of £85 and a victim surcharge of £15,

Last night, the former student of Sir John Leman High School admitted she had let people down and said she had turned to drink to cope with severe post-natal depression and high level anxiety.

She said: “I deeply regret the incident last year as I let myself, my family, my party and my constituents down.

“Whilst I am not making excuses for my behaviour, during that time I was suffering from severe post-natal depression and high level anxiety, and unfortunately used alcohol as a crutch.

“At the time of the incident, I offered to resign but having taken advice from both the Labour Party and Waveney District Council, I was informed that as it was a personal issue I did not need to resign.

“This incident has never affected my ability to effectively fulfil the role of being a councillor. I have now resigned as I believe the publicity surrounding this will make my continuing in the role untenable, plus I want to spend more time with my family.

“I sought legal advice to obtain an injunction to stop any printing of the story purely to protect the privacy of my family and not for any personal reasons.”

See today’s Journal for the full story and how we fought to name her.


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