FRANCES Roden has retained her position as leader of Stroud District Council.

Nominating her at the Council Annual Meeting last night, Cllr Keith Pearson (Con) said: "I believe that in the last 18 months she has led us admirably."

Cllr Roden (Con) thanked the chamber for her election and promised to represent the constituents of Stroud District.

"Times are tough but the council is reducing its work force by 10 per cent over the next four years and we are making budget savings of £2.5 million," she said.

"I suggest that over the next civic year we should look at the way local democracy is run and I would like to see active engagement by all members."

Meanwhile there was a close call between Cllr John Hudson (Con) and Cllr Roger Sanders (Lab) who fought for the position of chairman: Cllr Hudson received 25 votes while Cllr Sanders got 22 votes.