New Harrogate Mayor will aim to promote the district's economy

Coun Nick Brown, the next Mayor of Harrogate.

Coun Nick Brown, the next Mayor of Harrogate.

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The next Mayor of Harrogate has described his new appointment as “an honour” and will aim to promote the district's economy.

It was announced that semi-retired businessman Coun Nick Brown (Con, Newby), would take on the prestigious role on May 23 and his wife Linda would become the next Mayoress.

Coun Brown, who has represented the Newby ward on Harrogate Borough Council since 2008, has chosen Coun Christine Ryder (Con, Washburn) and her husband Chris to act as Deputy Mayor and consort.

Coun Brown said: “It is an honour to be named as the next Mayor of the Borough of Harrogate. My objective for the next year will be to promote the economy of the district and on the back of economic success promote and encourage philanthropy towards local charitable organisations.

“I look forward to being an ambassador for the whole of the borough and working with local communities to promote the 500 square miles of our wonderful district.”

Coun Brown was educated at Malsis Hall and Uppingham Schools and the Leeds College of Commerce.

During his professional career he was the Managing Director of his family business, the Brown and White Group of companies (Ford Main Dealers in West Yorkshire) and, after its takeover, he later joined the Main Board of quoted Trimoco Plc as a Director. During his business career, he was a former UK Vice Chair of the British Vehicle Rental and Leasing Association (BVRLA) and a former member of the Council of the Leeds Chamber of Commerce. He also served as a member of Wetherby Rural District Council and the Leeds City Council between 1970 and 1978.

Coun Brown serves with a number of charitable organisations where he is involved with fundraising and is currently self employed as a Business and Arts Fundraising Consultant. His charitable works include his role as the founding Chairman of the Yorkshire Regional Committee of the Wooden Spoon Society (the national charity of Rugby Union, supporting disadvantaged children and young people). Until recently, he was a Trustee of the Leeds International Piano Competition, a member of the Voluntary Fundraising Committee of Opera North and a member of the Country Landowners Association (CLA) Local Game Fair Committee.

In 2008, Nick was elected to Harrogate Borough Council to represent the Newby Ward and has held the office of Cabinet Member for Public Protection and Rural Affairs, Chair of Harrogate and District Community Safety Partnership and was Chair and Champion of Harrogate Borough Council’s Rural Members Advisory Group. He also holds current positions as an Honorary Yorkshire Region Life President of The Wooden Spoon Society, Board Member of Touchstone Leeds (the Leeds based mental health charity), Board Member of the Northern Aldborough Festival, Chair of the Friends of the Leeds International Piano Competition and is a Council Member for The Yorkshire Agricultural Society. He is also the current Chair of the Boroughbridge Safer Neighbourhood Group.

Nick enjoys shooting, fishing and all country pursuits together with gardening and golf. He also has an eclectic taste in jazz, soul, opera and classical music and is a keen amateur choral singer with the Harrogate Choral Society. He regularly supports St Mary and All Saints church in Cundall.

Councillor Christine Ryder was elected to Harrogate Borough Council almost four years ago and during this time has served on the Planning Committee, Licensing Committee and Visit Harrogate. She currently sits on the AONB Joint Advisory Committee, the Nidderdale Strategic Partnership and the Knabbs Ridge Community Fund Panel. She has also served for several years on Washburn Parish Council and, during the last four years, as chairman.

The borough’s four new civic heads will be sworn in for a 12-month term of office at Harrogate Borough Council’s Annual Meeting on May 23.