CLLR JANE Scott thanked her right hand man John Thomson and called council staff “amazing” as she said a tearful goodbye to Wiltshire Council.

Cllr Scott had led the council for 10 years and before that been leader of Wiltshire County Council.

She formally stepped down from Wiltshire Council in front of a full chamber at County Hall in Trowbridge this morning.

Cllr Philip Whitehead is the new leader.

Deputy leader John Thomson was also praised for his role over the last 10 years.

She said: “I haven’t thanked John properly throughout this last few months. Whoever becomes new leader, make sure you’ve got the right deputy. One of the things I’m going to miss is that partnership.

“Leading the council has and always will be team work. I thought of myself as a conductor and the staff and members were the real orchestra. They are the ones that did it. It’s the best job in the world, it’s the best county in this country. I will keep the people of this county and Wiltshire in my heart.”

She also called staff at the council “amazing” and thanked all workers within the unitary authority.

New leader of Wiltshire Council Philip Whitehead said: “Jane has made people in Wiltshire better off as a result and she couldn’t have been a better teacher for me. I admire her belief in Wiltshire as the finest county in the country and I wholeheartedly agree, thank you for being you, Jane.”

Leader of the opposition Cllr Ian Thorn added: “I want to recognise John’s contribution. He might be the Dr Watson to Jane’s Sherlock Holmes. Jane’s vision has been vital to the success of this council, and the transparency of the council has been critical to engage and encourage members.”

Cllr Jonathon Seed said: “I would like to say special thanks as a veteran for the special work with the military Jane has done. On behalf of veteran’s it has been a huge achievement."

A standing ovation was given as she and Cllr Thomson moved to the back benches where they will remain councillors for their wards of By Brook and Sherston.