Fenland Council’s former leader, two ex-Cabinet members and outgoing chairman praised at meeting

THREE councillors who stand down at May’s elections were praised for their contributions to the council.

Former leader Geoff Harper and ex-Cabinet members Jill Tuck and Pam Potts are three of the councillors who will not stand for election.

Cllr Harper has represented Doddington for 12 years. He was deputy leader to Alan Melton during his first reign at Fenland Hall and succeeded him in 2005.

In 2009 he resigned as leader following the e-mail gate scandal which rocked Fenland Hall but he was at the helm when the Audit Commission awarded the council excellent status.

An emotional Cllr Harper said at last Thursday’s meeting of the council: “It has been an interesting 12 years and to get the council to excellent status was the pinnacle.”

Cllr Tuck resigned as leader of Cambridgeshire County Council the previous week for personal reasons.

Cllr Melton said in tribute: “On behalf of Fenland, in your role as county council leader and as a person who has represented Fenland, thank you very much for what you have done.”

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Cllr Potts served Coates, Benwick and Eastrea for 16 years. She previously served in the council’s Cabinet and is a former chairman of the council.

She said: “I have loved being a councillor and wish you all the success.”

Cllr Harper received a bottle of champagne, while Cllrs Tuck and Potts each received a bouquet from Cllr Melton.

Outgoing chairman Ralph Butcher was also presented a bottle of champagne by Cllr Melton. Cllr Butcher described his time as chairman as “a pleasure and a privilege”.

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