Mayors pledge to work hard for their towns

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The leaders of town councils across the area have taken their chains of office following this month’s local elections.

We spoke to the mayors of Stamford, Bourne, Uppingham and Oakham to find out their ambitions for the coming year.

l Mayor of Stamford Sue Sandall already has first-hand experience of the role, having been consort to her husband Bob when he held the post in 2013.

Coun Sandall has been a member of Stamford Town Council for eight years. Speaking after taking up her role on Thursday last week, she said: “I feel very honoured. It’s something that I’m proud to be.

“I shall wear the chain with pride and try to fulfil my duty as best as I possibly can.

“Fourteen of the 21 councillors are members of the Stamford Independents group this year, so hopefully we will do a lot to help promote Stamford and get the best we possibly can for the town.”

Coun Sandall has chosen to support the Friends of Stamford Hospital, Stamford Macmillan Nurses, The Shack and Christ Church Day Centre during her term.

l In Bourne, mayor Philip Knowles is tasked with taking the council forward after losing considerable experience at the recent election. Trevor Holmes, Pet Moisey, Shirley Cliffe and David Hicks did not stand, while John Smith sadly died in April.

Coun Knowles said: “It’s up to the new council to pick up the mantle and run with it, and it’s up to me to try to lead that process.

“I will always try to promote Bourne in a positive light and encourage people to visit the town. I hope to engage as many groups and organisations as possible and get more people involved.”

l In Oakham, Alf Dewis will serve his second term as mayor having previously held the role in 2013/14. He said: “The coming year is going to be very busy as the council will be taking over responsibility for the maintenance of Oakham cemetery and commencing work on the neighbourhood plan.

“The plan will have a huge effect on the town and require participation from individuals, groups and interested bodies.”

l In Uppingham, Dave Ainslie will serve his second consecutive term as mayor. He has set out five key areas to tackle during his term.

They are: completing work on the neighbourhood plan; making a decision on how to proceed with plans to turn the town hall into a community hub; help form a town centre and business zone plan; sort out car parking in the town; and continue the extensive improvement work on Tod’s Piece.