FSB suspends Cornwall chairman


The chairman and secretary of the Cornwall branch of the Federation of Small Businesses (FSB) have been suspended.

The FSB was making no official comment on the news today, other than to confirm that both chairman Kevin Oliver, and secretary Richard Newman, had been suspended.

Ever since Oliver was elected to the FSB post last November, his relationship with the national body has often been an uneasy one.

He helped set up the Cornwall Business Forum in the new year, which the FSB has been keen to distance itself from, and took up quite an opposing view to the national FSB on such issues as the Local Enterprise Partnership, which led to much confusion on a local level.

Ann Vandermeulen, FSB’s development manager for the Cornwall region, remains the FSB’s sposkesperson for Cornwall until further notice.


  1. So it seems it was a waste of time for me to give you my view of things if you were to report something completely different and non factual.

    This is what I told you.

    None of us have been issued with the formal paperwork as yet, but I believe the following to be the reasons for the suspensions:-

    K Oliver Chairman Perceived conflict of interest with Cornwall Business Forum

    R Newman Secretary Perceived conflict of interest with Cornwall Business Forum

    Ccllr M Eathorne-Gibbons MC Chairman Suspected multiple breaches of the Code of Conduct

    L Eathorne-Gibbons Ex Chairman Suspected multiple breaches of the Code of Conduct

    Obviously all of these are allegations as they stand until the D&D process has been completed.

    From a personal perspective, I am happy to undergo the D&D process in order to prove that there is a complimentary relationship between the CBF and FSB and hence no conflict of interest exists.

    As papers are being issued to two of the National Executive Board to put them through the D&D process as well for their actions in support of a probably illegal position taken by Cornwall Council, then it is questionable whether the D&D process which is run internally by the NEB will actually come to unbiased decisions. In my view the NEB have put themselves between a rock and a hard place and it will take some considerable time for the FSB to regain credibility in Cornwall unless they take responsibility for their actions and put their faith back with the elected members.

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