STROUD'S mayor, Councillor Kevin Cranston, has been re-elected for the fifth year in the row.

Cllr Cranston was voted back into office at the town council's annual meeting on Monday, May 13.

Councillor Margaret Poulton was also re-elected as deputy mayor of Stroud.

Looking forwards, the mayor said that Stroud Town Council is committed to doing its part in cutting carbon emissions in the year ahead.

And reflecting on the past year, he said he was incredibly proud to lead a council which has committed itself to be carbon zero by 2030.

“We were one of the first town council’s in the country to commit to becoming carbon zero by 2030,” he said.

“To those cynics and sceptics who say 'Stroud is already green' or 'It doesn’t matter what we do compared to China and India', I would say that it does matter because we are setting an example to other small towns and parishes and our actions can show that, unlike catastrophic climate change, becoming carbon neutral does not mean the end of civilised life.

“It also adds pressure on the government to take the vital actions needed at national and international levels.”

Cllr Cranston said the town council is working with neighbouring parish councils in Chalford and Thrupp and Brimscombe, along with the county council and Stroud District Council on a feasibility study to deliver a separate cycle route from Chalford into Stroud town centre.

“This cycle track would make cycling along the dangerous A417 a thing of the past and help to reduce pollution,” he said.

“It would also give people the chance to get fitter and stave of many of the diseases of sedentary life styles.”

The mayor said the highlight of the past year was the successful transfer of the Subscription Rooms to the town council from the district, thus ensuring it remains in public ownership.

“The volunteers of the Subscription Rooms Trust are now running the venue and the first visible difference can be seen with the new café space in the old Tourist Information Centre. There are exciting plans for a major refurbishment and fundraising is under way,” he said.

Cllr Cranston was first co-opted on to the council in 1997. Representing Central Ward the 66-year-old is married with two grown children and works as an environment and quality consultant.