A 21-year-old student is set to become Hyndburn’s youngest mayoress.
Sara Britcliffe, daughter of Councillor Peter Britcliffe, will become Mayoress in May 2017 after serving one year as deputy.
Miss Britcliffe, a Languages student at Manchester University, will act as mayoress for her father, Peter Britcliffe, who has worked for the council for over 30 years.
Miss Britcliffe said: “It’s a great opportunity and a massive responsibility and I feel that taking on this role can show that I am a responsible person.
“I just want to make my dad proud.”
Deputy Mayor, Peter Britcliffe, 66, said: “Sara is very good at balancing lots of things in her life and I’m sure she will be equally successful at juggling the duties of mayoress with that of being a university student.”
Sara grew up in Oswaldtwistle with her two older brothers, Alexander and Dominic. She attended St. Christopher’s High School and Sixth Form, where along with languages, she studied politics.
Sara’s mother, Gabrielle Kroger, died in 2004 when Sara was just 9-years-old, leaving Sara to take up the post of mayoress.
Sara continued: “I feel both nervous and excited. I’d love to do it, it’s such a nice thing to do and have the privilege to do, but at the same time, I am only 21.
“I have university commitments so I’m a bit nervous about how I’m going to balance the time, or whether people are going to like me or not.”
While Sara will be Hyndburn’s youngest mayoress, she will not be the youngest in the country. 19-year-old Sheridan Bartlett became Britain’s youngest mayoress in 2011 when she was nominated by her grandfather, Mike, the mayor of Blaenau Gwent in South Wales.
Mr Britcliffe of New Lane, Oswaldtwistle, is a longstanding member of the council with the Conservative Party, beginning his career in politics in 1984. He was leader of Hyndburn Council from 1999 to 2010.
Hyndburn, a borough which can date its mayors back to 1878, has a civil or “ceremonial’ mayor, in which councillors are elected by their peers to the post. The mayor can nominate their escort.
The mayor carries out ceremonial duties, but cannot make formal decisions.