THE new leader of Caerphilly County Borough Council has been appointed.

Nelson councillor Sean Morgan was appointed to the role at the local authority’s annual general meeting held on Thursday, May 19, following his election by his party colleagues as leader of the Labour group.

Despite winning 45 out 69 council seats in the May 5 election, Labour had to appoint a new leader after incumbent Philippa Marsden lost her Ynysddu ward seat.

At the meeting, Cllr Morgan said he was “honoured and humbled” to be elected as leader of the council.

Cllr Morgan added: “Now more than ever we need strong and decisive leadership to ensure positive change for our residents.”

South Wales Argus: CAERPHILLY: New leader selected at Annual General Meeting

Cllr Sean Morgan

The Nelson councillor was first elected in 2012 and was deputy leader of the council alongside Ms Marsden – before resigning from the role in June 2021.

Cllr Morgan stepped down after taking a trip to Spain. At the time, the country was listed as ‘amber’ under coronavirus restrictions – meaning travel was not recommended unless it was necessary.

Cllr Jamie Pritchard, who represents the Morgan Jones ward, was re-elected as deputy leader.

Cllr Morgan also announced his new-look cabinet at the meeting.

Caerphilly Council's new cabinet

  • Leader: Cllr Sean Morgan;
  • Deputy leader and cabinet member for prosperity, regeneration, and climate change: Cllr Jamie Pritchard;
  • Cabinet member for corporate services and property: Cllr Nigel George;
  • Cabinet member for finance and performance: Cllr Eluned Stenner;
  • Cabinet member for education and communities: Cllr Carol Andrews;
  • Cabinet member for housing: Cllr Shayne Cook;
  • Cabinet member for highways and transportation: Cllr Julian Simmonds;
  • Cabinet member for social care: Cllr Elaine Forehead;
  • Cabinet member for planning and public protection: Cllr Philippa Leonard;
  • Cabinet member for waste, leisure and green spaces: Cllr Chris Morgan.

The meeting also noted Penyrheol councillor Lindsay Whittle had been appointed as leader of the opposition Plaid Cymru group.

Cllr Whittle said he hoped the new cabinet would have consistency, citing its changes over the last council term.

He compared the cabinet to the Hokey Cokey, and quoted the song: “In out, in out, and shake it all about”.

Also at the meeting, Cllr Elizabeth Aldworth, who has been a councillor for Bedwas and Trethomas for over 30 years, was voted by councillors as Mayor of Caerphilly County Borough. Cllr Aldworth will now chair full council meetings in her role.

Pontllanfraith councillor Mike Adams was made deputy mayor.

The annual general meeting also agreed the new chairmen and women of various committees. 

Caerphilly council committee chairman and women

  • Chairwoman of the Education Scrutiny Committee: Cllr Jo Rao;
  • Chairman of the Policy and Resources Scrutiny Committee/Partnerships Scrutiny Committee: Cllr Gary Johnston;
  • Chairman of the Environment and Sustainability Scrutiny Committee: Cllr Tudor Davies;
  • Chairman of the Housing and Regeneration Scrutiny Committee: Cllr Andrew Whitcombe;
  • Chairwoman of the Appeals Panel: Cllr Brenda Miles;
  • Chairwoman of the Appointments Committee: Cllr Liz Aldworth;
  • Chairman or woman of the Governance and Audit Committee: To be appointed at first meeting;
  • Chairwoman of the Democratic Services Committee: Cllr Lisa Phipps;
  • Chairman of the Licensing and Gambling Committee/Taxi and General Committee: Cllr Walter Williams;
  • Chairman of the Planning Committee: Cllr Roy Saralis.