New faces at council AGM

REFLECTIONS on the past year and pledges for the future were the order of the evening at Bassetlaw Council’s AGM in Retford.

Outgoing chairman Coun David Challinor handed over the chains to his successor Coun Ian Campbell and gave an emotional speech thanking everyone for their support over the past year.

“It’s been a tremendous 12 months and I can honestly say it’s been one of the most memorable years of my life.”

Coun Challinor spoke of the highlights of the past year, which included raising £1,265 each for Aurora, Bassetlaw Hospice and Sheffield Children’s Hospice.

Coun Ian Campbell promised to serve Bassetlaw to the best of his abilities.

“It’s an extreme honour to be elected and I have had a fantastic mentor in David,” he said.

“My chosen charities this year are Notts and Lincs Air Ambulance, H4H and Centre Place and I would ask you all for your help in raising money for these great causes.”

Newly-elected council leader Coun Simon Greaves was also officially appointed at Wednesday night’s meeting and paid tribute to his predecessor Coun Graham Oxby.

“I am the first leader to come from Worksop in the past 30 years and it’s a great honour to have that privilege today. I would like to pay tribute to Graham - his hard work has paid dividends.”

Coun Greaves said he wanted to change the culture of voting after a 33 per cent turnout in this year’s elections and called for a collaborative council working for the people of Bassetlaw.

“In view of the pressures both nationally and locally, there’s an even bigger need for people to pull together, irrespective of which party they are aligned to.”

Speaking after the meeting, newly-elected Conservative leader Coun Chris Wanless, said he welcomed a more cohesive council and greater engagement with the public but criticised Labour’s plans for Worksop.

“Coun Greaves contradicted himself by talking about how he wants to encourage and support town centres, then in the next breath wants to speed through the Vesuvius development, which hardly supports Worksop town centre,” he said.

“I was very disappointed he did not once mention any plans for our rural communities - obviously Labour have few rural councillors.”