Friday, May 17, 2024

West Lancashire Borough Council embarks on new governance structure


  • Committee system now in place 
  • Councillor Yvonne Gagen and Councillor Gareth Dowling elected as Leader and Deputy Leader  


Following the Annual Council meeting on May 15, the new governance structure that changes the way decisions are made by councillors has now officially come into play and the lead members and their respective areas of responsibility have been confirmed.  

Labour and Co-operative Party Councillor Yvonne Gagen was re-elected as Leader of the Council for a third year, while Labour and Co-operative Party Councillor Gareth Dowling  was elected as Deputy Leader.   


Lead Members and areas of responsibility are: 

Councillor Yvonne Gagen: Legal & Democratic and Human Resources   

Councillor Gareth Dowling:  Planning and Community Safety   

Councillor Nicola Pryce-Roberts:  Housing  

Councillor Melissa Parlour: Economic Regeneration and Green Growth   

Councillor Mark Anderson:  Finance  

Councillor Carl Coughlan:   Leisure  

Councillor Kerry Lloyd:  Health & Wellbeing  

Councillor Neil Furey:  Clean & Green  

Councillor Vickie Cummins:  Communities 

Councillor Thomas de Freitas: Rural Affairs  


Lead members will sit on the newly established Policy & Resources Committee alongside five further councillors, where key decisions will be made.   

Councillor Yvonne Gagen, Leader of West Lancashire Borough Council, said: “I’m honoured to once again be chosen to lead our Council into another year and I look forward to continuing to work hard on behalf of the people of West Lancashire. 

"I'm delighted to welcome an array of old and new talent into our leading roles, with Councillors Mark Anderson, Kerry Lloyd and Melissa Parlour stepping up and bringing their work and life experience to the roles of Finance, Health & Wellbeing and Economic Regeneration & Green Growth. The Council has a formidable team in lead roles to deliver on the Borough's priorities.  

Councillor Gareth Dowling, Deputy Leader of West Lancashire Borough Council, added: "We don't ever take the responsibility we hold lightly, and will continue our work on our key areas which voters in West Lancashire have supported; continued housebuilding through our own Tawd Valley Developments Ltd, upgrades to and provision of new leisure facilities across the Borough to improve and replace our ageing buildings, the development of a sustainable local plan which protects our most valuable food-growing land, and our drive to do our bit to protect the environment."   

Following the May elections, the composition of the Council is now Labour 26 seats, Conservative 14 seats, Our West Lancashire (OWL) five seats.