Anna Smith set to be named new leader of Cambridge City Council
Cllr Anna Smith is set to be named the new leader of Cambridge City Council after she was elected to head up the ruling Labour group.
Cllr Smith will be formally proposed as city council leader at an extra council meeting at the end of November.
Cllr Herbert will stand down at the end of November, but remain as a city councillor for the Coleridge ward, which he has represented since 2004.
Cllr Smith, who represents Coleridge, said this evening (Tuesday, October 12): “I’m delighted and honoured that the group has put their trust in me this evening. I will do everything I can to fulfill that trust.
“These are tough times for a local council, but we have a manifesto I’m proud of, and a really strong team of councillors and officers. And I will do my utmost to work with fellow councillors, partner groups and the whole community so that we can continue to build ‘One Cambridge, Fair for All’.”
She praised Cllr Herbert for his “tenacious, thoughtful and dedicated leadership” under which “both the city council and Cambridge have flourished”.
Cllr Smith pointed to more than “500 new council homes with more to come”, along with “reducing our carbon emissions” and “enhancing our city’s biodiversity and increasing our tree canopy” as well as building “strong partnerships with the voluntary sector, building food justice and funding hundreds of community projects that make a real difference to residents’ lives”.
She continued: “He’s also built a really strong and diverse team of councillors and has particularly encouraged new councillors to put themselves forward and to develop their skills. Of course, we will be working together closely during the upcoming weeks and months to ensure a smooth transition for councillors, officers – and, most importantly, residents.
“It’s an impressive legacy, and one I look forward to continuing.”
Cllr Herbert added: “We have a hugely able and experienced team of Cambridge Labour councillors. “This is clear from the hard-fought competition for this role between four talented members of our exec team. I will be giving my full support and assistance to Cllr Smith during the six-week transition period and beyond. Together we will continue to support our whole Labour team at city, county and Combined Authority level.
“Anna will have my full backing as we continue to make the changes and improvements our city needs. She is equally committed to ongoing partnership working with residents and local groups and businesses, as well as to the important outward-facing work we do with South Cambridgeshire, all of which benefits communities across Cambridge.
“With the support of the full council, she will take over the reins from December and take on the best job in the country, improving life for everyone in the city we all love.”
Cllr Smith was elected to represent Romsey ward on the city council in 2015. She was re-elected as city councillor for Coleridge ward in May.
She was elected as executive councillor for streets and open spaces in 2016, and executive councillor for communities in 2018. She has also previously been lead councillor for cycling.
Cllr Smith works as an educational adviser, and has a background in senior school leadership having previously been deputy head of Parkside.