Following local government reorganisation which saw the formation of the new North Yorkshire Council, Harrogate councillors now need to choose a ‘Charter Mayor’ for the town. The new Mayor was elected from among the ‘Charter Trustees’ who are the councillors elected for the Harrogate wards in May of last year.
A report to councillors today described the role of the charter trustees and of the new charter mayor: ‘The main duties of Charter Trustees are to ensure the continuation of the civic and ceremonial traditions of the town through the appointment of a Charter Mayor and Deputy Charter Mayor. The Charter Trustees Regulations 2009 provide that any historic property of the Borough of Harrogate which relates to the Charter Trustee area shall transfer to the Charter Trustees. An inventory of all such historic property has been produced which the Charter Trustees shall be responsible for maintaining.’
Councillors elected Councillor Michael Harrison to be the new Charter Mayor. Cllr Harrison was elected to the council in 2004 and represents the Killinghall, Hampsthwaite and Saltergate division. He lives in Saltergate and is North Yorkshire Council’s executive member responsible for adult social care.
Harrogate’s Member of Parliament, Andrew Jones, was among the first to congratulate the new Mayor saying: “I have known Michael for many years and worked alongside him on many community issues. Although the district has had a mayoralty for many years, this is a new role. I know Michael will ensure that our civic and ceremonial traditions, many of which – like remembrance – are held dear by local people, are carried out with dignity and respect.”