The Deputy Leader of Lancashire County Council is to retire from county politics at the next election.
County Coun David Borrow told party colleagues yesterday that he would not be seeking reselection for a Preston seat next May.
But the county council’s finance spokesman says he will serve out his term as a Preston city councillor for the Moor Park ward for the next two and a half years until the city council elections.
He said of his decision to bow out from county hall, where as deputy and finance spokesman, he has recently played a leading role in overseeing huge cutbacks in county spending: “I’ve reached the conclusion that I don’t want to stand for election. It will be 30 years since I was first elected as a councillor and I will be 65 next year. I decided I didn’t want to be a full time politician. It’s to do with me making sure I look after myself going forward.”
The controversial cutbacks the Preston North West councillor is currently presiding over placed him on a collision course not just with members of the public appalled at plans for closure of libraries, Children’s and Young People’s centres, but also with some within his own party who have been angered at the prospect of a Labour led authority imposing what they regard as Tory Government imposed cuts.
Coun Borrow acknowledged that his high profile job had taken a toll: “I don’t want to be under as much stress and strain as I am at the moment.”
He said he had been thinking about the decision for months, but had to make a decision this week as the selection process is about to begin for candidates for next May’s elections.
Coun Borrow, who served as South Ribble MP from 1997 to 2010, first gained a seat on Preston council in 1987.
By 2017 the economics graduate from Yorkshire will have notched up 30 years as a leading figure in local politics.
The boundaries and names for many county seats, including his, have changed and over the next few weeks it will become clearer which councillors still hope to remain in local politics.
The changes mean there could be surprises not only at election time, but also during the selection process.