One out, one in for Fenland councillors in council leader’s sweeping Cabinet changes

NEW county council leader Nick Clarke hit the ground running tonight by announcing a clean sweep of Cabinet posts, bringing in new faces to reshape the way Cambridgeshire is to be run.

He has axed Fenland councillor Fred Yeulett from his adult services portfolio but has retained his defeated rival, Councillor Martin Curtis, and given him a new job.

Cllr Curtis is to take on Cabinet responsibility for health and well being- a role described by Cllr Clarke as “one of the key challenges facing this county in coming years.”

Cllr Clarke said: “Health and well being is a massive challenge and takes in prevention and all the rest of it.

“Its got to be a mainstay of us moving forward as a county and if we can help to improve the quality of life it will make it better for every individual.”


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He said Cllr Curtis had a “huge amount of experience” and he was he anxious to use this in helping to improve the health and well being of Cambridgeshire people.

The new leader paid tribute to the outgoing Cabinet and described them as having done “a fabulous job. I wanted, however, a different mix of energy which is why some changes had to be made.”

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He said having retired early from business in his late 40s, he was now “hugely excited” about his new role as leader and the challenges which lay ahead.

“It takes you right back to starting up companies again,” he said. “It is a very exciting time.”

Cllr Clarke was elected last Friday but today stamped his authority on the council by bringing fresh faces to the Cabinet table.

His one link with the past will be to keep Councillor Mac MacGuire – another defeated rival for leadership- as his deputy and portfolio holder for community engagement.

There’s a big promotion for Councillor Ian Bates, former leader of Huntingdonshire District Council, who is appointed to look after the growth and planning brief.

There’s also a job for outgoing chairman, Linda Oliver, will takes on the resources and performance Cabinet role.

And there’s a new face in charge of adult services with Councillor Catherine Hutton taking on the role previously held by March councillor Fred Yeulett.

The re-shuffle will take affect in May once outgoing leader Jill Tuck officially stands down.

The full 10-strong Cabinet line-up and the new portfolios will be:

Nick Clarke (Leader of the Council)

Mac McGuire (Deputy Leader and Community Engagement)

Ian Bates (Growth and Planning)

Steve Criswell (Community Infrastructure)

Matthew Shuter (Enterprise)

Catherine Hutton (Adult Services)

David Harty (Learning)

David Brown (Children and Young People’s Services)

Martin Curtis (Health and Well-being)

Linda Oliver (Resources and Performance)

Cllr Clarke said: “This team has the expertise and the energy to lead Cambridgeshire through a time of great change.

“We will listen to what our communities have to say. Communities should be able to define their own priorities, what is right for them and what works best for them. The council should be there to help with that process, not just to provide everything to everyone on a one size fits all basis.

“Cambridgeshire is one of the fastest growing counties in the country and this team will provide the strong and dynamic leadership needed to make sure we deliver the results our taxpayers deserve.”

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