New parish council chairman steps up to bring community together

Emma Billingham

Emma Billingham

New parish council chairman steps up to bring community together

The new chairman of Burnham Parish Council aims to bring the village together as one community.

Cllr Judith Foster (Lent Rise ward) was elected as the new head of the council at Monday’s annual parish meeting.

The sixth female chairman of the council said she was very glad to have been chosen and hopes to carry on the hard work of outgoing chairman Cllr Paul Kelly (Burnham Beeches ward), who has stepped down because of work commitments.

She aims to work to unite the village and incorporate areas such as Lent Rise into village-wide projects, as well as supporting community groups such as the Well@Lent Rise.

Cllr Foster, who lives in Milner Road, said: “I think we’ve got a great team at Burnham Parish Council and my fellow councillors are fantastic and they give up an awful lot of time.

“I’ve lived in Lent Rise for 29 years and I represent all the community. But there are occasions when we have to remember that everybody is important when we look at projects in Burnham and not just focus on one area.”

Cllr Foster has been serving on the council since 1991, and her late husband Ian followed her onto the council when he was co-opted in 2013.

Ian died after a short battle with skin cancer last June. Cllr Foster said she believes he 'would be very proud' of her becoming chairman.

Deputy chairman Alan Samson will remain in his role for a third term.

Speaking at Monday’s meeting he thanked his fellow councillors for their continued confidence in him and promised to support the new chairman any way he can.

Stepping down from his post, though remaining as a councillor, Paul Kelly said: “I hope you will all agree we have worked really hard over the last year, ensuring a zero per cent precept increase, making the council more transparent and open.

“We should all be proud of what we have achieved. I wish my successor all the best and wish them the best throughout the year.”

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