Chair of North Hertfordshire District Council
The Chair of North Hertfordshire District Council during the Civic Year 2021-22 is Councillor Val Bryant, who represents Hitchin Bearton Ward. Her Consort for the year is Mr Stewart Bryant.
The Chair supports charities of their choice throughout their year of office. This year the Chair has chosen two charities:
- Garden House Hospice supports the communities of North Hertfordshire, Stevenage and surrounding towns and villages in Central Bedfordshire and Cambridgeshire. The Garden House Hospice provides support, personalised and compassionate palliative end of life care for those in need following a diagnosis of a life limiting illness. Garden House Hospice has been chosen in memory of a former staff member.
- Tilehouse Counselling, Hitchin is a charity that provides professional counselling in Hitchin and North Herts. They offer a confidential service for young people aged 13 to 18 and affordable counselling for adults with income of under £40,000 Their counselling centre is based in central Hitchin and Counselling can be short term or ongoing for up to a year.
The Chair of the Council is elected by the whole Council and serves for one year. He or she represents the District at a wide range of public events on a non party political basis.
If you belong to an organisation that is community-based, are planning an event to celebrate a special occasion and wish the Chair to join you, please contact the Chair’s Secretary to check their availability to attend. You can email Chairs.Secretary@north-herts.gov.uk. Alternatively you can download the attached Chair’s Engagement Form and return it to the Committee, Member and Scrutiny Team, District Council Offices, Gernon Road, Letchworth Garden City, Herts SG6 3JF or by email.
Vice-Chair of North Hertfordshire District Council
The Vice-Chair of the Council is elected by the whole Council and serves for one year. He or she represents the Chair of the Council when they are unavailable.
Leader of the Council
The Leader of the Council is the political head of the administration. The current Leader is Councillor Elizabeth Dennis-Harburg.
Under the Local Government Act 1972, the Chair of the Council is First Citizen of the District and at events within the District takes precedence over everyone except the Queen's Representative (the Lord Lieutenant for Hertfordshire). If the Vice Chair is attending an engagement in place of the Chair, he or she takes the same precedence.
The Chair of North Hertfordshire District Council always takes precedence over the Mayors of the Town Councils.
The Chair's badge on the Chain of Office is worn by the Chair of North Hertfordshire District Council during his/her Civic Year when representing the District Council at civic and community events.
The Arms or shield indicates the historical background and the diagonal stripes give the manorial history of Baldock and Letchworth Garden City through the colours of the Clare and Montfichet and the Barrington families. The ermine is from the shield of the Lytton family of Knebworth and suggests the royal manor of Hitchin. It represents Ermine Street running north through the District to join the ancient Icknield Way at Royston. On the top part of the shield, the fleece between two sheaves of barley symbolises the traditional activities of the area - agriculture, malting, wool and straw-plaiting.
The Crest indicates special features associated with North Hertfordshire. The bird (the Royston Crow), stands on a gold crown which is also featured in the Hertfordshire County arms. The crossed branches of oak represent the pioneering of the Garden City movement in Letchworth, and the crown has five battlements symbolising the union of five authorities in one, repeated in the five points on each antler of the hart.
The Supporters are the harts featured in the County Arms, but with the addition of gold pentagons charged with black cogwheels hanging from crowns. The pentagons refer to the union of the five authorities and the cogwheels to the establishment of modern industries in the area.
The Council's Motto MEMORES ACTI PRUDENTES FUTURI translates as "We are mindful of the past and careful for the future". It combines themes from the mottoes of Hitchin and Letchworth Garden City and recognises the contribution made by all the former authorities to the life and work of the new one. In Latin, it recalls the Roman associations of Baldock, Royston and Ermine Street.