UK's newest MP to step down as Trafford Council Leader

Andrew Western is to step down from his role as the leader of Trafford Council following his election to Parliament.

Cllr Tom Ross, who is currently Executive Member for Finance and Governance, has been elected as the new leader of the ruling Labour Group.

A special full meeting of Trafford Council will be held on Wednesday 4 January, when the new Council leader will be confirmed.

Cllr Western, who has been leader since 2018, was elected MP for Stretford and Urmston at Thursday’s by-election. He will continue to be a ward councillor for Priory but has decided to hand over the Council reins.

He said: “It’s been an absolute joy and a privilege to lead Trafford Council. In my time as leader, we have gone through so much as a borough and I am overwhelmed by how we have worked together to help support people.

“In particular, our work to support people during Covid has been an amazing achievement. From scratch, we worked with partners to create hubs across our communities. These were where people having to isolate could get food, emergency assistance, help – or just have a chat with our team.

“It showed Trafford at its best.”

Cllr Western was also delighted at the work done by the Council during his tenure.

He said: “From day one, when we scrapped controversial plans for Turn Moss, we have delivered on our promises. More money to support vulnerable adults and children, new social housing like Bowker Court, improved leisure facilities at Urmston and protection for green spaces like Turn Moss and the former golf course in Flixton.

“Our schools continue to flourish and we have invested millions of pounds in improvements to our town centres.

“The redevelopment of Stretford is also taking shape and will be an incredible place to live, work and relax. We are already receiving amazing feedback from across the board highlighting Stretford as an up-and-coming destination and it’s just going to get bigger and better.”

Cllr Western said: “There is still so much we need to do, particularly supporting people during the cost-of-living crisis. I wish the new leader well as they continue to work for better jobs, better health and a greener future for everyone in Trafford.”

Posted on Tuesday 20th December 2022