Allegedly "outdated" titles of "Mrs, Miss and Ms" are being retained at East Staffordshire Borough Council following a Town Hall spat over female identity.
A motion to scrap female prefixes from councillors' titles has been rejected, replaced by an amendment giving the option to members to choose their own titles.
The idea to scrap Mrs, Miss and Ms was first mooted by Deneice Florence-Jukes, Conservative councillor for Horninglow ward, to remove what she claims is an "outdated" near 250-year-old rule.
But her suggestion was defeated amid claims that members risked being put into a "politically-correct straitjacket."
In the current format, a male councillor is referred to as simply that, while a female councillor must be referred to as Mrs/Miss/Ms.
The motion was voted for at the meeting of the full council on Monday, December 4, where Councillor Florence-Jukes said: "I propose that this council resolves to demonstrate a commitment to recognise that all members of this council are equal, irrespective of gender and henceforth all councillors are addressed by the same gender-neutral title of Councillor, followed by first and last names.
"Clearly equality is an issue that affects us all, and equality can only be achieved in this council if we are committed and we are united and as one we are stronger."
But an amendment was recommended by Councillor Jacqui Jones, who represents the Needwood ward, who suggested that instead of completely removing any title from a name, each councillor should use their own discretion and be able to choose if they want to use the title.
Councillor Jones said: "This council continues to represent a commitment to recognising that all members of the council are equal, irrespective of gender.
"All members shall be entitled to choose how they wish to be addressed. This council continues to allow members to exercise their freedom of choice in this matter."
The amendment was seconded by Councillor Julia Jessel, representative of Needwood ward and deputy leader of the town centre and neighbourhoods committee, who said: "They want to eliminate discrimination, but in doing that you’re eliminating personal choice.
"I did explain to the mover of this motion some time ago that I, through personal choice, prefer to be referred to as Mrs Jessel. Technically I am not a Mrs, I was divorced in the year 2000 but chose, because my children were young, to retain my married name and my married status.
"I think that should be down to people’s personal preference, if you don't want the title, a Mr, Miss, Ms or Mrs, that should be your choice. This authority, I've always found has been very respectful to the individual and one of the things that I speak against is being put into a politically-correct straitjacket."
The amendment was passed after the vote saw 14 councillors vote in favour and 13 against, with a further four councillors abstaining.
Following an original approach from Councillor Florence-Jukes, Debretts, the world-renowned authority on etiquette and behaviour, has now changed its advice on how female councillors should be addressed, saying they should no longer be strictly referred to as Miss, Mrs or Ms.