Councillor David Burton is Derbyshire Dales District Council's Civic Chair for the coming year – 28 years after he last wore the same chain of office.
The Darley Dale ward member takes over from former councillor Graham Elliott, and will wear the ceremonial chain at official engagements in 2023/24, representing the Council at more than 50 functions throughout the year and organising special fund-raising events for charity.
Councillor Burton was first elected to the District Council back in 1979, serving continuously for 36 years. During that time he served as Chairman of Planning and in 1995 was unanimously elected Civic Chairman of Derbyshire Dales District Council. In the new 2023 administration he is sharing the Chair of Planning Committee role.
After a break from Council activities for eight years due to his younger daughter's health issues, he was re-elected at the local elections on 4 May, topping the poll in Darley Dale.
For the past 43 years David’s home with his wife Ruth Burton has been in Two Dales. His friendship with Derbyshire author the late Crichton Porteous, who lived in Two Dales, inspired Councillor Burton to be passionate about local history around Darley Dale.
Politics have always played an important part in Councillor Burton's family. His grandfather, Alderman William Kaye, was the last Freeman of the Old Borough of Mansfield, and his mother, Mrs Sheila Burton, was Matlock Town Mayor in 2000.
Councillor Burton intends to use his Civic Year to raise funds for the Send A Child To Hucklow charity, which enables many disadvantaged children who have never visited the countryside to experience a week's holiday in the Derbyshire Dales at The Nightingale Centre in Great Hucklow.
He said: "These children come from some of the most deprived areas within the UK, being selected by the local school head with Social Services."
Councillor Burton's involvement with Send A Child over 25 years has ensured funding for at least two groups of children each year to visit the centre.
Accepting the chain of office at Thursday's full council meeting, he paid tribute to retiring Civic Chair Graham Elliott. "There has been a lot of respect for the manner you represented our area Graham," he said, "and we express our profound thanks and wish you well."