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The current Mayor and Honorary Aldermen

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Below are detailed backgrounds of your current Mayor and Honorary Aldermen.

The Mayor and Mayoress of Charnwood 2019-2020

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Councillor Brenda Seaton

I was born in Birstall and attended Riverside, Stonehill and Longslade schools. I started work at fifteen as a window dresser/cashier for Margents on Granby St. I left home at sixteen moving to Cranmer St working as a linker at Kemptons and Benjamin Russell’s. Being piece work, it soon became clear that I was much too slow to ever make a living wage so I moved back to dressing windows for the Co-op. I changed my career again, working for Rediffusion in St Matthews and then moved to Telefusion managing the Aylestone branch.

After moving to Syston I joined the Leicester Mercury where I stayed until I had my first child. I moved to Thurmaston with my husband in the early 80’s and still live in the same house. I have three grownup children who amazingly 18 months ago all had babies within a few days of each other making me a very proud but exhausted Nanna.

At the age of thirty five I decided to go back to school to complete eight GCSE’s. My first formal exams! I enjoyed the learning process so much so that I went on to complete several NVQ’s, A Levels and a degree with the OU. I retired from my final job at Longslade two years ago when I was elected as a County Councillor. I really enjoy meeting people and consider it a privilege to serve as Mayor for the coming year.

Mrs Helen Johnson

I grew up in Birstall and went to Riverside Junior School then Humphrey Perkins Grammar School in Barrow upon Soar.  After my GCE's I worked for The Sun-Alliance Insurance Co and then the Hogg Robinson Group. Still in Birstall, I married and was then a stay at home mother, raising my 3 children and enjoying their many activities with them. I returned to work, in a new computerised world for The Chelsea Building Society and the Leicester Royal Infirmary.

In my retirement I have enjoyed many years of motor home travel around Europe, fun times with my family and grandchildren and gardening.  I am treasurer of our village hall in Burton Overy where I have lived for 28 years.  Now I am looking forward to supporting my sister Brenda Seaton in her duties as Mayor.

Honorary Aldermen

The conferring of the title Honorary Alderman is the highest award that can be made to a former Councillor in recognition of exceptional service to the Council. Honorary Aldermen wear a dark blue robe and support the Mayor on formal ceremonial occasions.

They occasionally undertake social duties at the request of the Mayor and are entitled to process in and take a seat at meetings of Council although they have no vote.

 Anthony Willian Stott

Honorary Alderman Tony Stott & Mrs StottAldermen Scott was first elected at a by-election on the February 13, 1986 as the Councillor for the Birstall Greengate ward. He continued to represent this ward, being re-elected four times, until May 2003 when e did not seek re-election.

During his seventeen years of service he was Mayor 2001-2002 and Leader of the Liberal Democrats on the Council 1986 - 2001. He was a Member of Cabinet December 1999 - May 2001 and Chair of Cabinet November 2000 - May 2001.

He was at various times a member of the Planning Committee and Plans Sub-Committees 1 & 2 and the Environmental Charter Sub-Committee. He also represented the council on various outside bodies, including the Outwoods Management Committee and was a Governor of Longslade Community College and Highcliffe County Primary School.

He was a member of Birstall Parish Council 1987 - 2003 and was on the Charnwood Local Strategic Partnership Board. He has been Chair of Action for Better Charnwood (ABC)since 1999. He lectures in Public Policy, Public Sector Management and Environmental Politics at De Montfort University.

John Bush

Aldermen Bush was first elected in 1995 as Councillor for Six Hills Ward and following the boundary changes in 2003, he became Councillor for Wreake Villages until his retirement in 2011.

CLLR BushJohn Bush served on many committees, which included Environmental Health and Housing, Policy and Finance, Planning, Scrutiny Commission and Personnel Committee. He was chairman of Resources Scrutiny Committee in 2003/04, Audit and Risk Management Scrutiny Committee in 2004/05 and Performance and Audit Scrutiny Committee between 2005 and 2007.

Between 2000 and 2003, John Bush served in the three party coalition Cabinet and he also served in the Administration between 2007 and 2011, serving in two different Cabinet Lead Member roles, Finance, Resources and Risk Management from 2007 until 2009 and Housing from 2009 until 2011. John Bush was Deputy Leader of the Council between 2007 and 2011 and was acting Leader during Mike Preston’s illness.

Joe Tormey

Aldermen Tormey served for 24 years as a Borough Councillor, first being elected in 1983 and serving until 1987 and returning in 1991 and serving until 2011. During this time he represented Loughborough Shelthorpe and Loughborough Lemyngton wards. During his time on the council, Joe Tormey was Chairman of many committees, both regulatory and scrutiny. He was Deputy Leader from 1995 until 1999 and recently Mayor of the Borough during 2007/2008. 

Outside of the council, he was Centre Manager at Fearon Hall, until he retired in 2007. A family man, Joe Councillor Joe TormeyTormey has three children, and has been supported in his work for many years by Jean. Well known in Loughborough and throughout the borough, Joe Tormey has been an active member of the Charnwood Community for most of his working life, dedicating himself with a selfless and caring attitude.

In proposing the appointment of Joe Tormey to the role of Alderman at full Council in September 2011, Councillor Miah said of Joe Tormey that 'he had electrified the Council Chamber and graced it with his wisdom and charm.'

Robert Shields

Robert Shields was elected as a Borough Councillor in May 1983 for the Wolds ward and served as a councillor for 20 years until 2003.  He had played a senior role in the work of the Council under the old committee system and the current cabinet and scrutiny system, and was directly involved in the transition between the two.

In proposing the appointment of Robert Shields to the role of Alderman at full Council in June 2017,  Councillor Slater referred to the different committee appointments that Robert Shields had held, including as Chair and Vice-chair under the committee system.  He explained that starting in 1999 the Council began to change its governance arrangements to the cabinet and scrutiny system and that Robert Shields had played an important part in those changes. Initially he had served as a scrutiny councillor.  From 2000 to 2003 he was a member of the Council’s Cabinet.  For that period all three main political parties were represented on the Cabinet and the role of Leader of the Council, and chair of the Cabinet’s meetings, was rotated on a six-monthly basis.  As part of those arrangements Robert Shields had served as Leader of the Council for three periods between 2000 and 2003. 

In supporting the motion other councillors stated that conferring the title of Honorary Alderman on Robert Shields would be richly deserved and referred to the positive outcomes he had secured for the Council and the Borough while he was a councillor and his long connection with the Borough.  Reference was also made to the hard work he had done with the other two parties as part of the three-party Cabinet.

Paul Day

Paul Day began representing Anstey on the Council in 1976 just after Charnwood Borough Council was formed. During this time, he was the chair of health and housing before stepping down in 1988. Paul was re-elected to represent Anstey in 2007 and served another 8 years on the Council. He spent his final year as the Mayor of Charnwood before retiring in 2015.

On 20th January 2020, Paul Day was presented with his scroll, robes and an Honorary Alderman medallion. Cllr Seaton explained how pleased she was that Charnwood Borough Council had bestowed the title of Honorary Alderman on Paul Day. She added that the appointment was thoroughly deserved and that Paul Day will continue to serve the Borough and make a difference to residents in his new role as an Honorary Alderman. Paul Day added that he had lived in Anstey his whole life, being involved with the Parish and Borough Councils for many years and it was an honour to find out he had been considered.

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