Labour group elects new county leader
Richard Westlake has been unanimously elected as the new leader of Devon County Council's Labour Group, ahead of the Devon elections on May 2.
Mr Westlake, who is councillor for Polsloe and Newtown, Exeter, and formerly deputy leader, replaces long-standing leader councillor Saxon Spence, who has served on the county council since 1974. Mr Spence was made a CBE for services to local government in 1997.
Mr Westlake worked for many years as a train driver and received an MBE in 2010 for his services to the railway industry and local government. He has served on numerous committees, recently as chairman of the Health Scrutiny Committee.
He also has more than 28 years experience as a school governor.
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The new deputy leader is Jill Owen, county councillor for Priory and St Leonard's, Exeter. She has served on the County Council since 1993.