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Lib Dems fail to garner support in Chairman vote
LIBERAL Democrat calls for 'political neutrality' failed to garner support as a new Chairman of Wycombe District Council was elected.
Conservative Cllr Wendy Mallen takes over from Cllr Ian McEnnis, as expected.
She was Vice-Chairman previously.
Cllr Mallen defeated the Lib Dem challenger Julia Wassell in a vote, despite the opposition party claiming it was time to have a non-Tory in the role.
Deputy Lib Dem Leader Cllr Simon Parker said the position is supposed to be non-political and asked the ruling Tories to show they were not simply paying lip service to this principle.
He put forward Cllr Wassell, singing her praises and emphasising her commitment to her ward constituents.
But when it came to the vote only Lib Dems supported her, leaving Conservative Cllr Mallen victorious.
Deputy Leader Cllr David Carroll said Cllr Mallen was 'immense' and had a great appetite for the job while Leader Cllr Alex Collingwood said she was 'outstanding'.
The Chairman, who heads up full council meetings and attends official functions, holds the position for a year.
The Lib Dems also tried to elect their candidate Cllr Brian Pollock as Deputy Chairman, but despite attracting support from the Labour group, the Conservative Cllr Roger Emmett was voted in.
Chairmanship of High Wycombe Town Committee remains with Tory Cllr Tony Green despite the Lib Dems putting forward Cllr Ray Farmer.
Bowing out, Cllr McEnnis said he had been deeply touched by the tributes paid to him after his year in charge and thanked wife Sarah and secretary Melanie Morgan.