Council stalwart takes on 'fantastic honour' of city's Lord Mayor's role

HULL'S new mayor has taken office, calling the role one of the highlights of a 22-year career as a city councillor.

Coun David Gemmell was elected as the 98th Lord Mayor of Hull and took possession of the chain of office and mayoral robes in a ceremony at the Guildhall yesterday.

The Labour councillor, who is also chairman of the Humber Bridge board and chairman of The Deep board, said: "I had a smashing time as Deputy Mayor and I'm sure I'm going to enjoy this. You are elected as the first citizen, the representative of Hull and the first among equals, and it's a fantastic honour to be asked to do this and be able to accept."

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He nominated the Parkinson's Disease Society and the national Alzheimer's Research Trust as his charities of the year.

He said: "I know from personal experience about Parkinson's because my dad suffered it for 10 years and I know what a fantastic organisation the local society is.

"Alzheimer's is a debilitating and horrendous illness, not only for sufferers but for their families, and there is a potential cure and treatment if they get the funds, so we are trying to help them."

Coun Gemmell, who replaced Coun Karen Woods, will have Coun Mark Collinson, a Liberal Democrat, as his deputy.