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Councillor who described all Muslims as 'terrorists' and asked why people should be 'interested in black history' apologisesMarjorie Snowden made comments on equality and diversity courseOfficial complained about the offensive comments to a colleagueThe reply was 'well, that's Marjorie', before it was reportedCllr Snowdon is a former mayor of Sherborne in Dorset
15:42 GMT, 18 April 2013
16:01 GMT, 18 April 2013
A councillor has formally apologised for labelling 'all Muslims as terrorists' while on an equality and diversity course.
Marjorie Snowden, a former mayor of Sherborne in Dorset, also asked why council members should be 'interested in black history' during the training.
A horrified official complained about the offensive comments to a colleague but the reply was 'well, that's Marjorie', before it was reported.
Former Sherborne mayor Marjorie Snowden who has caused outrage after calling all muslims terrorists
Mrs Snowden, aged in her 70s, has now written a letter of apology to the complainant, Sue Bickle, and has taken training on the West Dorset District Council's code of conduct.
Miss Bickle, a community development leader, was taking the course designed to teach councillors about legal duties regarding equality on June 28 last year.
It was during a slide show about an Islamophobic email hoax in 2010, alleging that Muslims wanted to have Holocaust Day banned, that Mrs Snowden made the remarks.
The Conservative councillor was said to have also failed to treat a disabled member of staff with respect and made a 'derogatory aside' about homosexual people.
Miss Bickle said: 'Before I could continue Cllr Snowden shouted out that the Muslims did want Holocaust Day banned.
'Cllr Snowden insisted on shouting me down and made several remarks which were clearly hostile to the Muslim community and bordering on religious hatred, identifying all Muslims as terrorists and adopting an us and them attitude towards this community.
Code of conduct: Sherborne Town Council building in Dorset, where Miss Bickle served
'The final point on this slide (was) an example of people misunderstanding and rejecting the purpose of Black History Month in October, when again Cllr Snowden interrupted, contradicting me, and stated that it was a waste of time and why should we be interested in black history.'
Mrs Snowden was reported by Miss Bickle but she initially refused to apologise and branded the offended trainer as 'incompetent'.
She said in a statement: 'I do not accept the criticisms or allegations made against me.'
A panel set up by West Dorset District Council ordered Mrs Snowden to take training on the code of conduct within 28 days, apologise, and be censured on her behaviour.
Roger Greene, the council's monitoring officer, said: 'I can confirm that as a result of a very constructive meeting with Councillor Snowden, full compliance has been achieved in connection with the sanctions of the standards committee.'