New Mayor confirmed and leader-re-apppointed as borough council enters final year

BARROW Borough Council has re-elected Councillor Ann Thomson as leader of the local authority at its annual meeting last night (Wednesday) and a new mayor has also been appointed.

Cllr Thomson, who represents Hindpool ward and is Lead Member for Cleaner and Greener Neighbourhoods, first took up the position as leader of the council in 2019. Cllr Thomson will be Barrow Borough Council’s last leader as a new unitary authority will be formed next year under Westmorland and Furness Council. 

Cllr Thomson said it was a privilege to be re-selected as leader of the council. She added: “I’m very proud to have maintained this position and it is a privilege to be re-elected.

“It’s been a challenging two years following the Coronavirus pandemic but I am confident that with our hard work and dedication we can continue to achieve great things for the borough and local residents. 

“It’s not going to be an easy year but as a council, we are going to endeavour to make sure we help our residents overcome obstacles they may face.” 

At the same meeting Councillor Hayley Preston, who represents Risedale ward and is also the authority’s Lead Member for Equality, Diversity and Inclusion, was elected as the new town mayor. 

The outgoing mayor was Councillor Helen Wall. 

Cllr Preston said she was thrilled to have been appointed as the new mayor. “I’d like to thank everyone who put me forward, it is a great honour and I’m excited to get started. 

“I’m looking forward to meeting lots of people in the year ahead and seeing first hand so many of the superb work that goes on across the borough.” 

As is the custom the mayor chooses a charitable organisation to support during their term of office. Councillor Preston has chosen to support charities that promote inclusion such as Drop Zone’s LGBT+ groups, Youthability and Furness Multicultural.