A Tory politician was described as “homophobic” and a bully after a row erupted on social media.

Hertsmere Borough Cllr Anthony Spencer likened his critics to the Stasi – the East German secret police – after they produced a letter he had written about gay people in the Jewish community and a post he had shared from a far-right group.

Hertsmere Borough Councillors Spencer and Michelle Vince’s argument erupted after Cllr Vince published a link on her personal Facebook page about the latest full council meeting saying ‘What a night. Council full of bullies’.

In the argument that followed, people called on Cllr Spencer to account for a letter wrote to Jewish News in December before he was elected onto the council in which he described himself as a traditional Jew and gay people as having “unorthodox practices”.

Borehamwood Times:

He was also criticised for sharing a post by far-right group Britain First, which called for people who burn the Union Jack to be deported.

In response, Cllr Spencer said “You people are behaving like the Stasi”.

Cllr Vince, a Labour councillor for the Cowley Hill ward, said: “I feel his views and compared with the Stasi is offensive.

“I have been bombarded by comments on Facebook all weekend. How does he represent the gay and Muslim communities in Shenley?”

Many on Facebook voiced their disgust about Cllr Spencer’s views.

Jeremy Newmark, the leader of the Labour Party in Hertsmere, said: “Britain First is a far-right and British nationalist political party and movement formed in 2011 by former members of the British National Party.”

Evelyn Conboy, of Elmwood Avenue, Borehamwood, said: “The article that was recently brought to my attention has saddened and shocked me as someone who has a very special link to the gay community.

“Everyone has their own opinion and that is a face of life but this councillor is representing everyone in his constituency.

“How can he represent the gay members of the Shenley and Hertfordshire community if these are his true feelings.

“This kind of attitude sets us back when he should in fact be supporting education and bringing us forward as a more tolerant society.”

Lisa Hunter, 46, who lives in Cllr Vince’s ward, said she is disgusted and appalled by Cllr Spencer’s behaviour.

She said: “He is representing the people of Shenley and was voted in by those people. He should not be making these comments in a public domain. I am appalled and disgusted.”

Speaking to the Borehamwood Times, Cllr Spencer said: “Perhaps the word Stasi was the wrong terminology to use but it does seem relevant when someone asks a question that is a waste of time.

“At the full council meeting Cllr Vince did ask two good questions about crime and street lights but to have her son ask a question on how much the council spends on food before a planning and full council meeting is a waste of time.

“The meeting went on until 11pm. I do not think her son’s school would be happy about that. The homophobic comments are quite unfair and unjust. I have nothing against the gay community.”

Both Cllr Vince and Mrs Hunter have made a formal complaint to Hertsmere Borough Council and the Conservative Party.

Hertsmere Borough Council leader Cllr Morris Bright said: "This started with Cllr Vince posting the council were bullies and Cllr Spencer saying she was the bully for keeping her 11-year-old son at a council meeting until 11pm last week.

"Matters then spiralled. I have spoken with Cllr Spencer who is understandably upset by the way he is being portrayed.

"I met with Cllr Vince on Monday. I believe she has reported Cllr Spencer to the Council's Standards Committee which is the right place to deal fairly with such matters. I await their findings."