WITH the announcement that the leader of Wiltshire Council, Philip Whitehead, is to step down from the role, here are the possible candidates for the new leader.

Richard Clewer

Cllr Richard Clewer

Cllr Richard Clewer

Councillor Richard Clewer will be one of the favourites to take over, having served as deputy to Cllr Whitehead.

He was also cabinet member for corporate services, heritage, arts and tourism, housing and communities, and conservative cllr for Downton and Ebble Valley since 2009.

When asked by the Journal if he had any leadership ambitions, he said it is something he would consider, but first he needs to see what happens with his own seat.

The Downton and Ebble Valley is not announced until later on this evening, so watch this space.

Pauline Church

Wiltshire Times: Pauline ChurchPauline Church

Cllr Pauline Church

Pauline Church is cabinet member for finance, procurement and commercial investment in the most recent council, as well as Conservative councillor for Wilton and Lower Wylye Valley since 2017.

Cllr Church was re-elected earlier on today, and said she was "really really pleased with the result", and pleased to have the opportunity to carry on her work over the last four years.

Laura Mayes

Laura Mayes

Laura Mayes

Conservative councillor for Roundway (near Devizes) since 2009, Laura was also cabinet member for children, education and skills.

Her other roles include seats on the Children's Select Committee, Devizes Area Board (vice-chairman), Health and Wellbeing Board, and chairman of the Safeguarding Children and Young People Panel.

Laura was re-elected in Bromham, Rowde & Roundway division today.

Laura has been contacted for comment.

Simon Jacobs

Simon Jacobs

Simon Jacobs

Conservtive Cllr for Devizes and Roundway south since 2013.

He has also chaired the Devizes Area Board.

He was a committee member at various times on Children’s Select, Licensing, Pensions Board and Overview and Scrutiny.

With the change in leadership in 2019, Simon joined the cabinet as member for finance and procurement. Having set the Budget for the 2020/21 financial year he was then invited to become the Member for Adult Social Care, Public Health and Public Protection.

Simon has been contacted for comment.

Bridget Wayman, re-elected cllr for Nadder and East Knoyle, could also have been a candidate, but when asked by the Journal whether she had any ambitions for the leadership, she gave a firm no, but said that she would like to remain in cabinet.