A councillor from a town in the centre of East Hampshire will be the district’s “first citizen” in a landmark year.

Cllr Catherine Clark had a birthday treat last Thursday after being elected chairman of EHDC in its 50th year.

The Whitehill & Bordon Community Party member will represent the organisation across the district and beyond after replacing Cllr Anthony Williams as the council’s civic head.

“I am looking forward to my year as chairman as EHDC, especially as it’s such a special year as we celebrate the 50th anniversary of the council,” said the member for Whitehill Chase.

“I can’t wait to get out and meet the residents in our area at the many events that are organised each year.”

Cllr Clark, who was elected with cross-party support, has made The Rainbow Trust her chosen charity. The good cause provides bespoke emotional and practical support for families who have a child with a life-threatening or terminal illnesses.

Cllr Clark’s ascension to chairman was a “proud moment” for her grassroots party according to its leader, Cllr Andy Tree, with Alton councillor Graham Hill being elected EHDC vice-chairman.

In stepping down as chairman, Cllr Williams said he was “honoured” to represent the district at numerous events with highlights including meeting the Duke of Gloucester at Butser Ancient Farm. It was the second time in 27 years the Headley councillor held the title, with the outgoing chairman enjoying a programme of visits.

He said: “I am sure that my successor Cllr Catherine Clark will enjoy the events and the role of chairman during her civic year as much as I have.”

People who are organising a community function or event, or want to shine a light on the good work of a group or individual can invite Cllr Clark to attend by searching for ‘chairman’ at www.easthants.gov.uk