REACTING to Woking Borough Council issuing a Section 114 Notice of effective bankruptcy, the Conservative group on the council issued a statement which read:

"Woking Council issued a Section 114 Notice. This means that the Council is unable to set a balanced budget for this year or for future years, as its expenditure is set to exceed the financial resources available.

"A Section 114 Notice stops all but essential spending with the aim of enabling the Council to continue its services to its most vulnerable residents. The Council will meet on Tuesday 20 June for an Extraordinary meeting to consider the notice and the response from the Chief Executive Julie Fisher.  The Council will then look to deliver an improvement and recovery plan which will report to the Council's Executive.  

"The Woking Conservatives Group acknowledges the Section 114 Notice, but is of course concerned what that will mean for residents moving forwards. We have already acknowledged, and apologised for our share of the responsibility in not ensuring that a more robust financial platform was in place during the period identified in the DLUHC [Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities] report.

"This financial strategy was put in place by the Conservative-led Council, with the support of the Liberal Democrat group in what appeared – with the information available at the time – to be in the best interest of Woking. Recently it has emerged that there may have been errors in the record-keeping, errors of which the Council were not made aware of."