Cllr Anna Smith was elected by Labour City Councillors tonight to succeed Cllr Lewis Herbert as leader of their group on Cambridge City Council. Cllr Smith will take over at the end of November, after Cllr Herbert’s seven and a half years in the role. She will be formally proposed as the new Leader of Cambridge City Council at an extra council meeting being arranged at the end of November. Lewis Herbert will be Council and Labour Leader until then and will remain as a city councillor for Coleridge ward until at least 2024.
Cllr Smith commented on her election, saying;
“I’m delighted and honoured that Group have put their trust in me this evening. I will do everything I can to fulfill that trust. These are tough times for a local council, but we have a manifesto I’m proud of, and a really strong team of councillors and officers. And I will do my utmost to work with fellow councillors, partner groups and the whole community so that we can continue to build One Cambridge, Fair for All.
“Both the City Council and Cambridge have flourished under Lewis’s tenacious, thoughtful and dedicated leadership. Over 500 new council homes with more to come. Reducing our carbon emissions. Enhancing our city’s biodiversity and increasing our tree canopy. Strong partnerships with the voluntary sector, building food justice and funding hundreds of community projects that make a real difference to residents’ lives.
“He’s also built a really strong and diverse team of councillors and has particularly encouraged new councillors to put themselves forward and to develop their skills. Of course, we will be working together closely during the upcoming weeks and months to ensure a smooth transition for councillors, officers – and, most importantly, residents.
“It’s an impressive legacy, and one I look forward to continuing.”
Cllr Herbert added;
“We have a hugely able and experienced team of Cambridge Labour councillors. This is clear from the hard-fought competition for this role between four talented members of our Exec team. I will be giving my full support and assistance to Cllr Smith during the six-week transition period and beyond. Together we will continue to support our whole Labour team at City, County and Combined Authority level.
“Anna will have my full backing as we continue to make the changes and improvements our city needs. She is equally committed to ongoing partnership working with residents and local groups and businesses, as well as to the important outward-facing work we do with South Cambridgeshire, all of which benefits communities across Cambridge.
“With the support of the full Council, she will take over the reins from December and take on the best job in the country, improving life for everyone in the city we all love.”