Monmouthshire County Council has chosen a new Chairman to serve for the next twelve months.  Councillor Peter Clarke was elected at the council’s annual general meeting on May 8th following nomination by Council Leader Peter Fox.  Councillor Fox said: “I have every confidence that once again Peter will make an excellent Chairman.” This will be Councillor Clarke’s second time as Chairman following his term of office in the year leading up to May 2011.

Peter Clarke was born in Royal Leamington Spa in 1943 at a time when his mother had been evacuated from nearby Coventry.  He was educated in the city’s Caludon Castle School, one of the country’s first comprehensive schools, after which he became an apprentice quantity surveyor.  Among the projects he worked on was the A40 Ross-on-Wye to Monmouth dual carriageway improvement in the early 1960s which was when he met Jan, his wife of 46 years.  Jan will act as Peter’s consort during his year as Chairman.

Councillor Clarke has extensive political experience having been a member of Gwent County Council for eight years before election to the newly-created Monmouthshire County Council in 1996.  He represents the Llangybi Fawr ward and is a governor on the boards of Usk Church-in-Wales School and Caerleon Comprehensive School.

Councillor Clarke is also a keen reader and swimmer and takes an avid interest in politics.  His chosen charity for the year is Gwent Music – the local authority music service in collaboration with Monmouthshire, Blaenau Gwent, Newport and Torfaen councils.

Leaders of the council’s political groups paid tribute to the work performed by outgoing Chairman, Councillor Maureen Powell, on her year of office.  Councillor Fox said: “As Leader of Monmouthshire County Council I sincerely thank you for being a first-rate Chairman over the past twelve months.”

Councillor Sheila Woodhouse who represents the Abergavenny’s Grofield ward was elected Vice-Chairman of the council.