Councillor Dorothy Flude has been formally sworn in as the new Mayor of Cheshire East.
At a meeting of full Council on Wednesday (May 15), all members unanimously agreed that Councillor Flude should became the fifth ever Mayor of Cheshire East. She will serve for one year.
Along with her grandson and consort, Alex Flude, she replaces Councillor George Walton and his wife Veronica, who have served the area so well over the past 12 months.
First elected on to the former Cheshire County Council in 2005, Councillor Flude was leader of the Labour group on Cheshire East for three years.
At the Mayor Making Ceremony before full council at Tatton Park, Knutsford, she told onlookers that she has a very difficult act to follow.
She added: “I never believed this Council would give me the honour of being Mayor so to my fellow councillors, I thank you. It is a privilege to be elected to serve the people.
“We in Cheshire East are privileged and fortunate to live in such a wonderful place – a place with so much to offer.
“We have the best fire and rescue service in the country, an outstanding university, excellent colleges, good schools, hospitals and health services. Leighton Hospital is in the top 40 in the country and our police service has an excellent reputation in community relations.”
She went on to pay tribute to Cheshire East industries and services of international repute, such as Bentley Motors, in Crewe, and Oliver Valves, of Knutsford. She expressed her excitement at the redevelopment of Crewe railway station and the continuing astrophysics work at Jodrell Bank, near Holmes Chapel.
Councillor Flude went on to tell members: “It is incumbent upon all to enable the young people here in Cheshire East, no matter what their circumstances, to grasp the many life-enhancing opportunities that this wonderful place has to offer.
“We in this Council have important links to every aspect of life in our Borough and through those links we support many initiatives. You here today are part of those links. It is right that, on this important day, we consider the 370 children and young people in care.
“It is this Council’s aim that all Cheshire East children who need care, receive their care in this Borough. I am asking you all to spread the word that we need more foster carers.”
One of her two charities has been announced as Blind Veterans UK – a military charity for blind ex-servicemen and women. The second will be announced at a later date.
Councillor David Newton, who proposed that Councillor Flude serve as Mayor, said she would carry out her duties with “style and panache” and Councillor David Brown, who seconded the motion, added she was the “perfect successor” to Councillor Walton.
The Deputy Mayor for 2013/14 will be Councillor Wesley Fitzgerald, who led Cheshire East Council from its inception in 2009 until 2012. His appointment was proposed by Councillor Bill Livesley and seconded by Councillor Chris Thorley.
Councillor Fitzgerald, whose consort for the year will be his partner, Joan McCance, said: “I am honoured and sincerely grateful to my fellow members for this opportunity.”