Cllr Rob Humby to prioritise Hampshire's economy after being made county council leader

A CONSERVATIVE councillor says it is an ‘honour’ to have been appointed as the new leader of the county council.

Thursday, 19th May 2022, 2:08 pm
Updated Thursday, 19th May 2022, 2:10 pm

At Hampshire County Council's annual general meeting in Winchester today the Conservative member for Bishop’s Waltham, Cllr Rob Humby, was given the top job by his colleagues.

It comes after serving two years as deputy to the outgoing Cllr Keith Mans.

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New Hampshire County Council leader, Cllr Rob Humby. Picture: David George

Cllr Humby was presented with a ceremonial badge by his predecessor, then gave his first speech as leader of the council.

He said: 'It is truly an honour to be the new leader of Hampshire County Council - I am Hampshire through and through, and am passionate about doing the best for the people and business that make Hampshire great.

'As leader, serving the people of Hampshire will be my most important duty.

'I look forward to working with you all, and doing my very best for this wonderful county.'

For the past few years, Cllr Humby has been the executive member for economy, transport and environment for the county council, overseeing the start of projects like the Stubbington Bypass.

He said he will be retaining the economic remit, making Hampshire's finances one of his top priorities.

'I believe that a strong economy will best support our fantastic public services , with inclusive employment and business opportunities to improve our quality of life,' he said.

'A thriving economy is so important, and that is why I'm retaining economic development in my portfolio.'

Before his speech, Cllr Humby also presented a bouquet of flowers to Cllr Mans' wife, Rosalie.

Cllr Roz Chadd, the executive lead member for children's services, was appointed as Cllr Humby's deputy.

Opposing Liberal Democrat leader, Cllr Keith House, said he has a 'good relationship' with the new county council leader, and looks forward to working with him.

He said: 'I get on very well with Rob - we've both been district council leaders at one time or another and I believe we can work well together for the future of Hampshire.

'If the next round of local elections go the same way as they did this year, the next county council leader could well be a Liberal Democrat.'