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Thursday, 23 October 2014

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New Copeland mayor sworn in

Seascale councillor Eileen Eastwood has been sworn in as the new mayor of Copeland.

Copeland mayor Eileen Eastwood photo
Eileen Eastwood

The 74-year-old was formally installed as the borough’s 40th mayor at a civic ceremony and said she was looking forward to a busy and interesting year.

Her aim is to raise awareness of all that is good in Copeland and to build up friendships with other areas, she said.

She is no stranger to community work, as a member of Seascale parish council for 35 years and a past chairman of 16 years.

“I’ve always been a big supporter of democracy and when someone says something can’t be done, it spurs me on to try to achieve it,” she said. “At parish level you are more in charge of your own destiny.”

She was elected to Copeland council 11 years ago and in that time has served on a variety of committees and panels, including planning and scrutiny. A Conservative councillor she has also been a member of the ‘shadow’ executive for some years.

She moved to west Cumbria from Burnley when she was 10 and attended St Begh’s School and Whitehaven Grammar before starting work at the Quaker Oats offices. After three years she got a job at UKAEA where she was to meet husband Derek, who hails from Ulverston. He will act as Eileen’s consort during her mayoral year.

The couple have a son Alan and two daughters, Janet and Claire, and are looking forward to becoming grandparents for the first time in July, she said.

Handing over the chain of office to Eileen was retiring mayor Geoff Garrity and his wife and mayoress, Sandra.

The couple have attended 200 engagements during the year, from Buckingham Palace to the smallest coffee morning, and enjoyed them all.

“It would be hard to single out any one of them, they were all so very special to us and we were made to feel so very welcome,” Mr Garrity said.

His mayoral charities, West Cumbria Hospice at Home and the Alzheimer’s Society, will share the £11,000 raised during his year.

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