National and Devolved Politics

11.09.19

Debbie Wilcox stepping down after being named in Theresa May’s Honours list

Councillor Debbie Wilcox, leader of Newport City Council and the Welsh Local Government Association (WLGA), will step down as leader. This comes after being recognised in former Prime Minister Theresa May’s Resignation Honours List.

Wilcox, a former teacher, was elected into council in 2004 and served as a cabinet member from 2012 before becoming the first female leader of the council in 2016. The now Baroness Wilcox spent 35 years in education and as a result took particular interest in this during her career in local government.

The nomination came from Jeremy Corbyn for her contribution to education and local government. She was one of three people nominated by the leader of the Labour Party, including barrister John Hendy and Former General Secretary at NUT Christine Blower.

She told councillors it was a “great honour” and will be stepping down “at least in the short term” but that it will be done so “with a tear in my eye” to join the House of Lords as a Labour peer. The announcement was made at a meeting of the full council after the peerage news on Tuesday 10th September, this is according to the Local Democracy Reporting Service.

Councillor Andrew Morgan (Rhondda Cynon Taf), WLGA Presiding Officer said: “This much-deserved honour is in recognition of her commitment and considerable contribution.

“Since she first took the helm at the WLGA, Debbie has worked tirelessly to champion local democracy and promote local government at every possible opportunity.

“She’s a great communicator and is vociferous in her defence of local democracy and accountability.”

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