Councillor Hugh Rayner sworn in as Mayor of Barnet at Hendon Town Hall

Lincoln-born Councillor Rayner has represented Hale ward since being elected to Barnet Council in 2006

Lincoln-born Councillor Rayner has represented Hale ward since being elected to Barnet Council in 2006

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Councillor Hugh Rayner has been appointed as the 50th Mayor of Barnet.

The Hale ward representative was sworn in at Hendon Town Hall on Monday evening as he replaced the outgoing mayor Councillor Melvin Cohen.

Councillor David Longstaff was appointed as the deputy mayor, and Councillor Rayner’s wife Susan will serve as the mayoress.

Lincoln-born Councillor Rayner has represented Hale ward since being elected to Barnet Council in 2006.

The former RAF squadron leader served for 17 years in the armed forces, and spent many of those based at RAF Hendon.

He remains the president of the Royal Air Force Association's Hendon & District Branch, and continues to take a keen interest in military matters, including the preservation of the borough’s war memorials.

He has served on a number of council committees, but his time on the council has not been entirely free from controversy.

In 2012 he gave up his free council parking permit after being found to have broken council rules by using it to avoid parking charges while out canvassing in Edgware. He later claimed he had forgotten to pay.

Councillor Rayner will support the Barnet Association for the Blind and the RAF Museum Hendon during his mayoral year.

He said being selected as a mayor was “a tremendous honour”.

Comments (1)

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12:11pm Wed 4 Jun 14

Mike NW7 says...

Ok now that we have had the Barnet Council press release regurgitated, here's the real story, re-written for no fee to the Hendon Times:

The newly elected Barnet Council met for the first time on Tuesday night at Hendon Town Hall. Missing from the council were the elected representatives for Colindale ward, as following the tragic death of the Green Party candidate, the election for Colindale has been postponed to the 26th June. If, as expected, Colindale ward votes again for Labour councillors, the Labour Party will have a total of 30 elected councillors, compared with the 32 elected Conservatives, with Jack Cohen of the Liberal Democrats as their sole representative. Under these circumstances the Conservatives will hold a wafer-thin majority of one councillor.

You would expect that given the fine balance of power just about in the Conservatives favour at this time, consensus politics would be the order of the day. Not a bit of it. Following what can only be described as a provocative of move, the Conservative majority in the council voted to move the council's September meeting to coincide with the Labour party conference, to "punish" the Labour group for not agreeing to a pairing arrangement with the Conservatives that was also accompanied by a financial sweetener. The Labour group would not agree to this.

A lot can happen in four years, and all it takes is for one by-election to tip the balance of power away from the Conservatives. If Richard Cornelius thinks the Labour group will work in consensus with the Conservatives over the next four years then he is surely mistaken.

I'll leave the final word however with Cllr Dan Thomas, the Conservative Deputy leader of the Council from an entry in his blog:

"What the practitioners of juvenile politics don’t appreciate, though, is that their methods backfire: any ordinary resident witnessing such childishness will run a mile from them and their ‘ideals’ – and that applies to those on the right as well as the left."
Ok now that we have had the Barnet Council press release regurgitated, here's the real story, re-written for no fee to the Hendon Times: The newly elected Barnet Council met for the first time on Tuesday night at Hendon Town Hall. Missing from the council were the elected representatives for Colindale ward, as following the tragic death of the Green Party candidate, the election for Colindale has been postponed to the 26th June. If, as expected, Colindale ward votes again for Labour councillors, the Labour Party will have a total of 30 elected councillors, compared with the 32 elected Conservatives, with Jack Cohen of the Liberal Democrats as their sole representative. Under these circumstances the Conservatives will hold a wafer-thin majority of one councillor. You would expect that given the fine balance of power just about in the Conservatives favour at this time, consensus politics would be the order of the day. Not a bit of it. Following what can only be described as a provocative of move, the Conservative majority in the council voted to move the council's September meeting to coincide with the Labour party conference, to "punish" the Labour group for not agreeing to a pairing arrangement with the Conservatives that was also accompanied by a financial sweetener. The Labour group would not agree to this. A lot can happen in four years, and all it takes is for one by-election to tip the balance of power away from the Conservatives. If Richard Cornelius thinks the Labour group will work in consensus with the Conservatives over the next four years then he is surely mistaken. I'll leave the final word however with Cllr Dan Thomas, the Conservative Deputy leader of the Council from an entry in his blog: "What the practitioners of juvenile politics don’t appreciate, though, is that their methods backfire: any ordinary resident witnessing such childishness will run a mile from them and their ‘ideals’ – and that applies to those on the right as well as the left." Mike NW7
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