Express & Star

Former headteacher appointed Mayor of Dudley pledges to 'fly flag' for the borough

A former headteacher has taken on the role of the new Mayor of Dudley.


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Councillor Hilary Bills, who serves the Halesowen North ward, was officially sworn in at a meeting on Thursday evening.

And she has already pledged to do "everything possible" to raise money for her three chosen charities including Access in Dudley, Diabetes UK and the Friends of Dudley Performing Arts.

The new Mayor of Dudley, Councillor Hilary Bills, was sworn in on Thursday

Councillor Hilary Bills said: "It is a real honour to be Mayor of this borough and a wonderful opportunity to raise some much-needed funding for these incredible charities and I will be doing everything possible to do that and raise their profile too.

"Without these charities, people would simply not have access to help and support that they need, so I urge people to give and do what they can to help out.

"I am also really looking forward to meeting new people and flying the flag for the borough at a range of civic occasions."

Mayor of Dudley Councillor Hilary Bills and consort John Bills

The newly appointed mayor was a teacher for 42 years and worked in schools around Oldbury, including at Perryfields Primary school where she worked as deputy head.

She then became head at Holyhead Primary in Wednesbury, before leaving the role in 2005 to become president of the National Union of Teachers, which is now known as the National Education Union.

She is also the current secretary of Halesowen in Bloom, a community group which works to enhance the town.

Deputy Mayor, Councillor Pete Lee, and consort

In 2018/19 and 19/20 Councillor Bills served as deputy Mayor and now takes over from Councillor Andrea Goddard, who served as Mayor over the past year.

Councillor Bills’ husband, John, was named consort for the year ahead, while Councillor Pete Lee will remain as deputy Mayor, a role he has had for the past 12 months.

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