With much sadness, I am standing down as leader of the Labour Group for Redcar and Cleveland. As part of the Labour group on October 5th 2021 we unanimously elected a new leader, Councillor Alec Brown.
I have accepted a new employment opportunity that will see me out of the region for long periods making it impractical to continue in my current role. As the leader of the group it is important to be completely dedicated, to work hard for the region, to be answerable and to hold the administration, partnership authorities and the government to account. I will no longer have that capacity and so it is right that I step aside and make way for someone who has.
I am therefore absolutely delighted that Councillor Alec Brown has been elected this evening to lead the Labour Group going forward. Alec has worked extremely hard for the party, often behind the scenes, holding multiple roles over the past six years, including Deputy Leader. I have every confidence in him and wish him all the very best as the new Labour leader.
Finally, it has been an absolute honour to have led the Labour Group in Redcar and Cleveland. I would like to give thanks to all who have supported me, to my Labour Group colleagues particularly for their spirit and support throughout my leadership and their adaptability during the pandemic; to the Labour Party, the wider community and residents for their continuous encouragement, good humour and positive energy. Thank you all, it has been a great experience and one of the highlights of my political life to date.
NB: I continue as councillor for the Coatham Ward in Redcar and will continue to serve the residents, the Labour group and the Labour party to the best of my ability.