Long-serving town councillor Andrew Leonard was sworn in as the new Mayor of Louth on Friday night, taking over from Councillor David Wing.
Coun Leonard, who runs the restaurant at Kenwick Park Golf Club and has served on Louth Town Council since 2007, said that it was a “great honour” to be elected by his fellow councillors for the year ahead.
Coun Jill Makinson-Sanders proposed Coun Leonard for the role, and said: “Louth will change, it’s true, and this council is also undergoing a period of change and I can think of no better person to carry us forward.
“Coun Leonard’s number one priority is always what’s best for Louth, not for him dancing to the tune of political masters in Westminster.
“Integrity and independence, a sense of humour - albeit a strange one - and intense loyalty are his hallmarks.”
In his first mayoral address, Coun Leonard said: “Louth is a fantastic place to live, and I have been living in Louth all my life.
“The quality of life and everything that goes on here is, for me, just about as good as it gets.
“Louth is ever-changing, and over the forthcoming years Louth is going to change. It doesn’t matter whether it’s retail or housing, there are a lot of changes coming down the pipeline and I hope to steer the council and Louth through that forthcoming year.
“All the different hats I wear in the voluntary sector in Louth - whether it’s Chairman of the Hubbard’s Hills Trust, Town Council, President of the Rotary Club, Magistrate, and so on - they are all voluntary roles, and my view is that I put something back into the community which looks after me, and supports me through my business.”
After thanking the Town Clerk Linda Blankley and the Mayor’s Secretary Lynda Phillips, the new mayor added: “Obviously, I intend to do some things slightly differently.
“I am very much a traditional person, but I’m a great believer in moving forward and slight modernisation.”
Mayor Councillor Leonard then proposed a vote of thanks for the retiring mayor, Councillor David Wing, and added: “Dave really has fulfilled his duties and has been at every event he’s been required to be at, and gone above and beyond what would have been expected.”
The Mayor presented Coun Wing with a coat of arms for services to the town.
Coun Wing thanked his fellow councillors and handed out gifts to the Town Clerk, the Mayor’s Secretary and the Mayor’s Serjeant, before presenting his wife with flowers to a rapturous applause from his colleagues.
Speaking about his vision for the future after the meeting, new mayor Coun Leonard said: “Louth has to modernise and move forward, but without losing its individuality and it’s quality.
“People love to come here to Louth and therefore we need to tread a careful path for the future.
“I am very keen to support local businesses and keep the town’s vitality going. Local businesses are the key to our success and we need to support them, as it gives the town individuality.”