Partnership Administration announced for North Somerset


Following the local elections which took place last week in North Somerset, today the political group leaders for North Somerset Council announce the partnership administration which will govern the council for the next four years.

The elections last week saw no single political group gain enough seats to secure overall political control, so a partnership administration has been formed between the following groups:

  • Liberal Democrats and Independents
  • Labour
  • Green
  • Portishead Independent
  • Independent

This partnership will hold 35 of the 50 seats on the Council.

Cllr Mike Bell, Leader of the Liberal Democrats and Independents group becomes Leader of the Council: “Our Partnership Administration is committed to working together as a team to provide quality services and great outcomes for our communities. We will build upon the strong and effective political leadership we have seen in the past four years to make a difference for North Somerset. 

“Local people told us that they wanted councillors to work together across the political groups to get things done. We will try to do just that in a spirit of mutual respect and cooperation that puts local people first. I am personally very much looking forward to the next four years and leading an organisation that is so determined to deliver on its promises to our communities.”

Cllr Catherine Gibbons, Leader of the Labour group will take the role of Deputy Leader of the Council and will retain her Executive responsibilities for children’s services, families and life-long learning. She said: “As Deputy Leader I will work tirelessly to ensure that the voice of the people in North Somerset is heard, by working with others to create a strong, caring, people-focussed administration.

“I am passionate about ensuring all our children and young people get the best start in life with the support, guidance, lifelong education and skills to access all the opportunities they deserve to lead fulfilling lives.”

Cllr Bridget Petty, Leader of the Green group said: “The Green group in working collaboratively as a cross-party partnership can show that across the political groups the futures of all residents matters and to ensure a fairer future we must work together. Green Party councillors will work to offer fair, green solutions that make life better for all.”

Cllr Roger Whitfield, spokesperson for the Portishead Independent group said: “The Portishead Independent Group is happy to be a part of this exciting new partnership. We look forward to sharing our ideas on expanding the ways in which the council listens to communities and continuing the work of the previous administration in our partnering with town and parish councils on important projects and local affairs.

As a part of this administration, we will be engaging with our partners in improving the lives of people in North Somerset and will work towards bringing about the changes in Portishead that residents have been asking for.”

The council’s Executive will be made up of nine executive members, each with their own portfolio of services to govern. They are:

  • Leader of the Council – Cllr Mike Bell
  • Deputy Leader of the Council and executive member for children’s services, families and life-long learning – Cllr Catherine Gibbons
  • Executive member for climate, waste and sustainability – Cllr Annemieke Waite
  • Executive member for homes and health – Cllr Jenna Ho Marris
  • Executive member for highways and transport – Cllr Hannah Young
  • Executive member for adult services and stronger communities – Cllr Roger Whitfield
  • Executive member for safety in the community – Cllr James Clayton
  • Executive member for spatial planning, placemaking and economy – Cllr Mark Canniford
  • Executive member for culture and leisure – Cllr Mike Solomon

These positions, along with the appointments to council committees, scrutiny panels and outside bodies will be formalised at the Annual Council meeting taking place on Tuesday 23 May at 6pm at the Town Hall in Weston-super-Mare. Cllr Karin Haverson, the current Chairperson of the Council, will stand down at the meeting and Cllr Wendy Griggs will be elected as the new Chairperson of the Council for 2023-24.