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Mayor retains hot seat


Stroud Mayor Stella Parkes has praised the town’s community spirit and people’s willingness to support each other.

Councillor Parkes, who represents Central Ward, was unanimously returned as Mayor at the Town Council meeting last night (Monday).

Councillor Camilla Hale (Valley Ward) was unanimously re-elected as Deputy Mayor.

“Over the last year Stroud has faced many challenges and I think the key word for me during this period would be resilience,” said Councillor Parkes.

“In all the official engagements I carried out I was struck by the sense of communities coming together to help each other out through difficult times. I am proud of the way the Town Council has responded to helping and supporting local organisations especially the community hubs.”

aaTWM STC 150523 1063 1 | Mayor retains hot seat
Stroud Town Council members on the steps of the Sub’ Rooms, 15 May 2023 Picture by Thousand Word Media/Andrew Higgins.

Councillor Parkes will continue her weekly “Mayor in the Market” base in The Shambles because it provides an opportunity to speak directly to residents and visitors.

She believes that one of the biggest challenges for the year ahead is to keep the town centre vibrant and successful.

“Town centres are changing, you can already see this in Stroud with the closure of large chain stores and four banks,” said Councillor Parkes.

“The challenge is going to be to regenerate the town centre and keep it alive and thriving as an important district centre. Though our Levelling Up bid did not get Government support, the research and consultation we carried out has provided us with clear plans on how to develop the town and focus on specific areas we know will improve life for residents and visitors.”

Councillor Parkes is committed to working closely with Gloucestershire County Council and Stroud District Council to tackle such issues as litter, graffiti, potholes, parking and public toilets.

“Issues such as these as well as improving the bus service in the town can only be resolved if councils at all levels keep working together for the good of the county,” she said.

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