Hartlepool’s council leader has declared there will be “many big things to come” after the local authority’s line-up for the next 12 months was confirmed.

The council’s annual meeting on Tuesday saw leadership and committee positions finalised for 2022/23, with a coalition between Independent and Conservative councillors again ruling the local authority.

Cllr Shane Moore, Independent Union representative, remains council leader, having first taken up the role in 2019.

Conservative Cllr Mike Young returns as deputy leader, after previously resigning from the position last August following controversy over his role in talks about potential nuclear waste disposal.

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The pair were chosen by councillors ahead of Labour candidates Cllr Brenda Harrison and Cllr Jonathan Brash respectively.

Speaking after the annual meeting, Cllr Moore said he was delighted to have been elected leader again for another year.

He said: “Since 2019, when we took over, we had a tough task ahead of us, then we had Covid.

“I think this year is the first real year we’re going to be able to get back to normal and start delivering on the ambitious plans and capital programmes we’ve put forward over the past few years.

“We’ve got a strong set of committees, we’ve got good representation across the board and I think we’ll be able to progress nicely over the next year.”

“Exciting things” to come include new council homes at Hill View in Greatham coming online “in the next month or two”, as well as progress with the Town Deal Board, according to the leader.

Cllr Moore added they will also be getting “the spade in the ground” for the new Highlight leisure centre.

Elsewhere Conservative Cllr Brian Cowie was elected as ceremonial mayor for the coming year, with his party colleague Cllr Dennis Loynes taking the deputy position.

Labour missed out on receiving any committee chair or vice chair positions, despite offering candidates for each role.

Conservative Cllr Bob Buchan was voted as chair of adult and community based services, while coalition member Cllr Jim Lindridge retained the Children’s Services position.

Cllr Young will chair Economic Growth and Regeneration, with Conservative Cllr Tom Cassidy retaining his Neighbourhood Services chair role.

Conservative Cllr Andrew Martin-Wells is to be Licensing Committee chair, while Councillors Paddy Brown and Rob Cook, Hartlepool People Group members, will chair the Planning and Audit and Governance Committees respectively.

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