Devon Live say that Torquay’s ceremonial ‘mayor’ has been told he can’t hold a civic reception for Torquay United’s title-winning players because the Gulls’ success has come too close to the council elections.

Ian Doggett has been told that he can’t welcome manager Gary Johnson and his players to the town hall for an official congratulation because he would risk breaching the so-called pre-election ‘purdah’ period when the council cannot be seen to be favouring any candidate over another.

The purdah generally comes into force for a period roughly three weeks preceding the election.

Mr Doggett is standing as a candidate for the Liberal Democrats in Paignton, but insists he just wants to give the Torquay players a proper party before they all go off for their post-season holidays, and doesn’t want to use it to improve his chances at the ballot box.

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