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St Helens Conservative leader David Monk to step down ahead of election
Updated 5:17pm Monday 12th May 2014 in News
THE St Helens leader of the Conservative party is stepping down ahead of the next round of the local elections.
David Monk, a councillor in Rainford, told a meeting of St Helens Council that increasing business commitments meant he no longer had the time to dedicate himself to his responsibilities as a politician.
The 70-year-old described his four years on the council as “enlightening, educational and enjoyable”.
Neil Taylor, 59, a former mayor of St Helens and a Liberal Democrat councillor in Newton for 16 years, will also bring the curtain down on his political career.
In a farewell speech in the council chamber, he paid tribute to the unsung work of many community groups across the borough, whose work he had witnessed in his mayoral year of 2010/11.
Carole Gill, 44, a Labour councillor for town centre ward, is another who will be stepping down.
Meanwhile, Labour’s Marie Rimmer, who has been chosen to be Labour’s St Helens South and Whiston candidate for the 2015 general election, will defend her seat in West Park for the elections that take place on Thursday, May 22.
Councillor Rimmer, 67, lost the leadership of the council in 2013 after a challenge by her then deputy leader, Barrie Grunewald, which led to speculation on the political grapevine that she may call time on her council career.
However, she will now aim to maintain her role in the grassroots for one more year before her challenge to enter Parliament.
Candidate lists for the local elections will be published at 4pm on Friday, April 25. A third of the council’s 48 councillors are up for election.
Residents are being advised to ensure they are on the electoral register by Tuesday, May 6 if they want to vote. People on the register can vote by post providing applications are received by 5pm on Wednesday, May 7.
More than five million people across North West England will also have the opportunity to vote in European elections to select the region’s eight Members of the European Parliament.