Banbury inaugurates new Labour town mayor

New Banbury town mayor, Gordon Ross (r) and outgoing mayor Tony Mepham
New Banbury town mayor, Gordon Ross (r) and outgoing mayor Tony Mepham

Gordon Ross, Labour town councillor for Banbury Ruscote, has become the town’s mayor.

Gordon Ross, town councillor for Banbury Ruscote, has become the town’s mayor.

Councillor Ross was sworn into office at an inauguration ceremony on Tuesday May 11 when the departing mayor, Conservative Tony Mepham, handed over the robes and chain of office. His wife, Mary, becomes the mayoress.

The inauguration continues a long and friendly tradition of councillors from each party taking it in turns to be mayor.

The new mayor said; “I am very much looking forward to being mayor of Banbury. When I moved here I fell in love with the town but I never dreamed that one day I would be mayor. I’ll do my best to uphold the standards of the office.”

Mayor Ross was born in 1938 in Aberdeen and left Scotland in the 1960s to relocate to Banbury.

Mayor Ross said: “I left Aberdeen in 1963 to work for Banbury Borough Council until 1966 when I moved to Bicester Urban District Council. I returned to Banbury in 1968. I remained at Banbury and worked for Cherwell District Council until retiring as Assistant Chief Environmental Health Officer in 1992. I was a volunteer advice worker with Banbury CAB from 1993 until 1997 when I was employed by Oxford Community Work Agency as a debt and welfare rights adviser. I finally retired in 2007.”

Steve Kilsby, Labour Group leader, who proposed Mr Ross said: “Councillor Ross puts other people first. He is a diligent councillor and a voice of sound reason.”