REDDITCH councillor Brandon Clayton says it is a “great honour” to be named as the new chairman of Worcestershire County Council.

Cllr Clayton takes over from Anne Hingley and becomes the first councillor from Redditch to serve as chairman since the council was reorganised 20 years ago.

Cllr Clayton, who was previously Vice-Chairman, said: "It is a great honour for me to become the new chairman of Worcestershire County Council.

“Anne Hingley has done a wonderful job over the last twelve months and it has been a privilege to work with her as her Vice-Chairman.

“My priority for the next year will be to work hard to bring councils and councillors from across Worcestershire together.

“I am proud to live in Worcestershire and working with all parts of the county. I plan to do everything I can to promote the best of Worcestershire."

The 63-year-old, who represents Redditch North at county council and is a borough councillor for Astwood Bank and Feckenham, was praised by his colleagues as he was handed the chain of office in Thursday’s county council meeting.

Cllr Juliet Brunner, county councillor for Arrow Valley East and Redditch Mayor, said: “He is well liked and respected by constituents and colleagues from all parties.

“He embodies the seven principles of public life, of selflessness, integrity, objectivity, accountability, openness, honesty, and leadership that we all aspire to.”

Cllr Jane Potter, county councillor for Redditch South, added: “Brandon is also a great team player. He is a hard-task master, always insisting on those extra few minutes or hours in front of residents.

“I know that he will carry out his duties in the most professional way.”

Cllr Clayton, who has lived in Redditch with his wife Anita for 37 years, was elected to the county council in 2017.

Prior to the last general election, he worked for five years as a researcher for the then Redditch MP Karen Lumley.

Peter Tomlinson, councillor for Ombersley, has been elected as Vice-Chairman.