A COUNCILLOR has become a town's mayor just months after he was appointed deputy following a fellow member's death.

Councillor Henry Nicholson took over as Shildon’s mayor this week from Coun Peter Quinn.

The Labour member was only named deputy mayor in November after the death from pneumonia of Coun Theda Bannister, who had held the role, the month before.

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He said: “I am extremely proud as I was born, bred and educated in Shildon. It’s one of the proudest moments of my life to be named mayor of the town.

“I am looking forward to being mayor in my own community for the next 12 months.

“I am thankful of the hard work which Coun Quinn has done over the last with his consort, Coun Shirley Quinn.

“He has represented the town with humour and dedication.”

Speaking at the town council’s meeting this week Coun Quinn said: “It is with a heavy heart that I pass over the mayoral chain to Coun Nicholson.

“I have thoroughly enjoyed my year as mayor of Shildon. It has been a great honour and privilege to represent the town as its leader.

“I wish to thank the town councillors for their support without which it would have made my job as mayor very difficult especially after the sad death of Coun Bannister.”

Coun Matthew Burdess was named as the deputy mayor for the coming year.

The leader of the council for 2014-15 is Coun Allan Walker, with Coun Quinn made deputy leader.