Honorary aldermen and alderwomen positions removed at Worthing Borough Council

Honorary aldermen/alderwomen positions have been removed by Worthing Borough Council.
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The decision was made at the Full Council meeting on Tuesday July 18, alongside another decision to remove the use of most ceremonial robes and accessories by the council at formal and public events – in order to ‘modernise’ the council, according to the governing Labour party.

The other goal was to replace the positions with something more akin to a local knighthood, or a civilian award in America, in order to open it to anyone in Worthing, not just past Mayors and council members, Samuel Theodrini (Lab, Castle Ward) explained.

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Leader of the opposition Daniel Humphreys (Con, Offington) felt the council was trying to address issues of little concern to the public, and that they had no structure to replace the current system upon removing it.

Worthing Town Hall (o3p)Worthing Town Hall (o3p)
Worthing Town Hall (o3p)

He suggested the council put off a decision until that structure was in place, stating: “I feel like we’re very much putting the cart before the horse here – we haven’t got any detail of what any of that would look like.

“This feels like a very heavy handed way of dealing with a perceived, unproven opinion.”

Mr Theodrini said as a young person growing up in Worthing, he never felt these traditions or ceremonial garments applied to him, and that this is an important issue.

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He said: “We have been told to focus on the more important issues and of course we are focusing on them.

“We’re working on things that matter to the people of this town – we were elected to modernise this council.”