Conservative politicians in Cornwall have been accused of “hypocrisy” after backing a new bid for Cornwall to become a City of Culture after dismissing a similar bid as a “waste of money” and a “vanity project”.

It was announced last night that Cornwall Council was backing a bid for Cornwall to be a City of Culture in 2025.

The Conservative run council is backing the bid just four years after the party demanded that the council drop a bid for Cornwall to be a European Capital of Culture.

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Liberal Democrat councillors who were involved in the previous bid have hit out at Conservative politicians for their “hypocrisy”.

Edwina Hannaford, Lib Dem group leader, highlighted on Twitter Conservative councillor James Mustoe’s comments on the previous bid.

He said then: “We campaigned on scrapping the Cornish bid during local elections. As largest group on Cornwall Council, we were pleased to immediately put pressure on new administration and see the bid scrapped before more money was wasted.”

After she posted the comments St Austell and Newquay MP Steve Double accused the Lib Dems of playing politics over the issue.

He said: “Cornwall’s Lib Dems once again play politics. The previous bid we opposed was for the EU City of Culture after we had voted to leave. This bid is for the UK City of Culture – something we have always supported. But then we’ve got used to the Lib Dems favouring the EU over the UK.”

When Cornwall Council proposed spending £336,000 on its bid to be Capital of Culture in 2017 Mr Double said that it was a “waste of money” and “a vanity project for a few people in the Cabinet”.

Cllr Mustoe, replying to Cllr Hannaford quoting his previous comments, said: “The EU City of Culture Bid was for Truro to be the EU City of Culture, designated for a year after we had left the EU. Hence, waste of money. This is the UK City of Culture bid. Always good to celebrate unions that we are a part of. One was looking backwards, this is not.”

In last night’s announcement of the bid Linda Taylor, Conservative leader of Cornwall Council, said: “I fully support Cornwall’s bid to become City of Culture and in doing so, showcase the rich and diverse cultural and creative seam that runs through all of our communities. Our unique identity as a place stems from our culture. From our talented writers and musicians, our exceptional artists, film and theatre makers, this bid will allow us to shine a spotlight on them all and create a lasting cultural legacy.”