Boston’s first Northern Irish Mayor called on the town’s councillors to ‘be innovative’ as he took up the chains of office.
Coun Brian Rush told the Full Council meeting on Monday that wearing the ‘red robes of Boston’ was a ‘very proud’ moment in his life and would make the people of Omagh, his home town, proud.
Mr Rush, the town’s 483rd Mayor, said his late mother Jean Frances would have also ‘been so proud to tell all: That’s my boy up there. Yes, he’s the Mayor, God love him’.
Coun Yvonne Stevens, said Coun Rush had inspired her to get involved in local politics, she said: “He is driven and dedicated, extremely professional in all he does, and a kind, warm and approachable individual. I am pleased to call him my friend.”
The Mayoress, wife Jayne Rush, along with Deputy Mayor Coun Barrie Pierpoint and Deputy Mayoress June Petherick, Mr Pierpoint’s cousin, also took up their chains.
Outgoing Mayor and Mayoress, Coun Stephen Woodliffe and his wife, Catharine, were also praised for their efforts.
During their year in office, they have attended more than 200 functions.
Coun Woodliffe told Coun Rush that he would ‘have to think on his feet’ while in office.
The new Mayor’s Scout is Mikey Dore and the new Mayoress’s Guide is Jessica Winrow who take over from Dax Blackhorse-Hull and Jordan Smith respectively.
During the meeting, which also formed the Annual General Meeting of the council, Coun Michael Cooper was elected Leader of the council, taking over from Coun Peter Bedford who stepped down earlier this year.
His deputy leaders are Coun Michael Brookes and Coun Aaron Spencer.
The new Cabinet also sees Coun Martin Griggs take up Coun Cooper’s previous portfolio for housing, property and community.