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11.04.19

Bob Sleigh to stand down as Solihull Council leader and WMCA deputy

The leader of Solihull Council and deputy mayor of West Midlands Combined Authority is standing down after five years in the role.

Bob Sleigh served as deputy leader of Solihull Council for eight years before leading the Conservative group since 2014, but will step down ahead of next month’s local elections.

Cllr Sleigh, speaking to the Local Democracy Reporting Service, said his decision was “purely a personal one” but added that “the time was right to hand over the baton.”

The next council leader will formally take over at the next full council meeting on 14 May after the Conservative group choose their new leader following the local elections on 2 May.

Sleigh, whose wife is also a sitting councillor, will also step down as the deputy chair of the West Midlands Combined Authority.

He said: “I just feel it's the right time for me.

“There's a healthy budget, the Conservative majority is strong and Solihull is on top of its game.

“It's a 24-7 role and it's very time-consuming and I feel you can only give the role so much.”

Sleigh said he was pleased to have played a “major role” in the creation of the combined authority, and that he wanted to continue “serve the community” and that it would be down to his successor what role he takes.

The councillor added that he did not have any “policy regrets,” but did say there were still “jobs to be done” in the borough.

Sleigh, who is also up for election as a councillor next month, was first elected around 20 years ago and has served as cabinet member for health and wellbeing, deputy leader and leader.

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