Lord Mayor 2023 – 2024 Councillor Al Garthwaite

Lord Mayor of Leeds for 2023-2024 is none other than our chairperson Councillor Al Garthwaite

Al was officially appointed at the Full Council AGM yesterday here she is resplendent in her robes.

Congratulations Al from Caring Together – we know you will do a good job!

Official portrait photograph of Councillor Al Garthwaite in ceremonial robes

Picture above and text below from https://www.leeds.gov.uk/Pages/Lord-Mayor-of-Leeds

“Councillor Al Garthwaite is the 129th person to hold the Office of Lord Mayor of Leeds.

Al grew up in an army family and moved frequently, including to Germany, Turkey and Wales. After school, and a stint as Assistant Matron in a boys’ school, she studied English and Psychology at Durham University. It was here she became involved in international and local campaigns for human rights and social justice.

In 1973, Al came to Leeds, where her mother’s family originated. She lived in Chapeltown, in a communal house of children and adults. Enthusiastic for lifelong learning, she qualified as a teacher, taught in prisons and pioneered women’s health courses in inner-city community centres. She participated in the creation of a national Women’s Advice and Referral Service, producing a fortnightly newsletter for information and political discussion.

Wishing to use her varied skills and experience for the benefit of the city she’s made her home for the last fifty years, Al has been an elected Councillor for Headingley, Hyde Park and Woodhouse since 2016. As well as striving for the increased wellbeing of her ward and its residents, especially during the current cost of living crisis, she focuses on environment, climate change, arts and culture, community safety, planning, licensing, and working for an end to violence against women and girls.

Al is extremely honoured to have been chosen as the Lord Mayor of Leeds and is very much looking forward to her year in Office.

Role and responsibilities

As the first citizen of Leeds, the role of the Lord Mayor is to act as an ambassador for the City, meeting with citizens and communities and welcoming visiting dignitaries from home and abroad. The Lord Mayor holds a ceremonial, diplomatic role, meaning that they cannot engage in political or Ward matters during their time in office. They are not an elected Mayor and therefore have no influence over policy and decision making.”

Coronation Celebration

It was standing room only for a while at our Celebration Afternoon Tea this week!

Members enjoyed afternoon tea and we were entertained with live music thanks to students from Leeds University (LUUMIC)

As always, this was a communal effort, involving members and volunteers as well as our staff. Making decorations and setting up the space, contributing home made scones, cakes and coronation trifle, preparing food on the day as well as serving and keeping on top of the mountain of washing up, donating prizes and lots of other things to be used on the day, and turning up to support us. Everyone had a part to play.

We had several skill share sessions leading up to the event and this produced decorations for our window and tables.