Chanting protesters were thrown out of the Guildhall where councillors gathered to approve £9m of cuts to public services in next year’s budget.

Kingston’s Mayor Councillor Patrick Codd was forced to retire and pause the meeting as the group of about 15 protesters were escorted out the public gallery shouting "shame on you" and "why don’t you stand up for the people you represent?"

The campaigners, who included members from GMB union, Unison and Kingston anti-cuts group, held a rally before the meeting, chanting and waving banners as councillors arrived.

The Christian People’s Alliance also held a prayer vigil, urging people to show solidarity with borough residents affected by cuts and local councillors, who would have to make tough decisions.

Chris Leary from Surrey County Unison said: "We need to look at what we need to help others to save and what services we need.

"With job losses, it is a time when we do need our public services."

At the meeting the authority froze council tax for the second year running and passed the 2012-13 budget proposals, which included £5.3m on growth items, including homelessness.

The majority of savings are from the One Kingston initiative, including cuts of £800,000 by sharing services and £6,000,000 through commissioning services, including adult social care and children’s services.

Councillor Rolson Davies, executive member for finance said: "Reducing services is not pleasant but thankfully the reductions in terms of front line services are not as severe as last year’s had to be.

"It is not pleasant for our staff. And it is not pleasant for any of us.

"But with the safeguarding we have included we aim to protect the most vulnerable to ensure there is a seatbelt for those most at risk."

Conservative councillor Prien Patel said if the authority was to become a commissioning council they would need to commercialise and help boost the charity sector in Kingston. The Tory also said he was worried by projected savings in One Kingston projects, which had little or no details despite promising savings of £500,000 by 2014.

He said: "I am concerned that of ten projects the council has identified only three that have actual start dates.

"How can we say this if we don’t even know what the start dates of these operations will be?"

Conservative councillors abstained from voting and while the Liberal Democrats voted for the proposals at the meeting, on Wednesday, February 29.