Chair of the Council

Chair of North Hertfordshire District Council

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.

The Chair of North Hertfordshire District Council during the Civic Year 2020/21 is Councillor Terry Tyler, who represents Chesfield Ward. His Consort is Mrs Deborah Freeman.

Terry was born in Hertford and has lived in Flitwick, Milton Keynes, Letchworth Garden City and Welwyn Garden City until becoming a resident of Great Ashby in 2005.

Terry was married to Pat, who sadly passed away in 1995, leaving two children, Anna and Stuart. Anna also passed away in 2018. Terry has three beautiful grandchildren: Erin, Laurie and Alba.

Terry studied Electronic Engineering at Harlow College and Computer Science at Hatfield Polytechnic. He is currently studying Psychology (BSc Hons) at the Open University. He worked in the Computer Industry in Logistics for several years, before starting his own small agency for Video and Marketing website development.

He has been a Great Ashby Community Councillor since 2014 and became a North Hertfordshire District Councillor in 2016 for Chesfield Ward.

Councillor Tyler believes in contributing to the local community and is actively involved in the following community services: Round Diamond School crossing, grounds maintenance of Great Ashby Neighbourhood Centre, Hertfordshire Countryside Management Services and walk leader for Hertfordshire Health Walks in East and North Hertfordshire. He is also working with Great Ashby’s Stevenage Borough Council neighbours (St Nicholas, Pin Green and Chells Manor) and North Hertfordshire District Council, carrying out projects that benefit local communities.

Terry’s interests are walking and cycling.

Chair's charities

Terry's chosen charities for his term in office are:

The aim is to raise money for selected charities that operate in North Hertfordshire. If you can, please consider making a donation to them to show your support.

Inviting the Chair to an event

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 Alternatively, you could 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 for 2020/21 is Councillor Val Bryant, who represents Hitchin Bearton Ward.

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 Martin Stears-Handscomb.


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.

Civic Insignia

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.

File Chairs Engagement Form14.44 KB