Call yourselves a cabinet?

[Pictured l-r: Front: Councillor Sarah Warren, Councillor Kevin Guy, Councillor Alison Born. Middle: Councillor Matt McCabe, Councillor Paul May. Back: Councillor Dave Wood, Councillor Paul Roper, Councillor Tim Ball, Councillor Mark Elliott, Councillor Manda Rigby.]

You can all stand on the Guildhall staircase and smile but l for one think you should be hanging your heads in shame.

Having released the list of ‘who does what’ as regards the ‘inner cabinet’ on the new B&NES administration, l do not see the mention of the word ‘heritage’ anywhere!

Does it come under ‘built environment’ or ‘resources’? Who knows. I certainly don’t.

You refuse to acknowledge the management of our biggest resource – our heritage. Archaeology, architecture and the maintenance of major tourist ‘go-to’ spots and the fabric of our tourist-inducing World-heritage city needs a dedicated councillor.

You are happy to take the money. The income it generates. Shame on you.

I only tuned into the AGM last night to see if the cabinet would be named. It was a 6.30 pm meeting and we didn’t get a live feed on YouTube until 7.11 and then the feed was often out of focus. Anyone like to stump up the money to buy them new kit?

Anyway, here’s the official release from the council’s comms department.

“Councillor Guy was appointed as Leader at Bath & North East Somerset Council’s Annual Meeting last night (Thursday May 25). The administration has announced the following Cabinet, along with their portfolios:

  • Councillor Kevin Guy (Bathavon North) Council Leader  
  • Councillor Sarah Warren (Bathavon North) Deputy Leader and Cabinet Member for Climate Emergency and Sustainable Travel 
  • Councillor Dave Wood (Mendip) Deputy Leader and Cabinet Member for Council Priorities and Delivery
  • Councillor Mark Elliott (Lansdown) Cabinet Member for Resources
  • Councillor Paul Roper (Kingsmead) Cabinet Member for Economic & Cultural Sustainable Development
  • Councillor Alison Born (Widcombe and Lyncombe) Cabinet Member for Adult Services     
  • Councillor Paul May (Publow with Whitchurch) Cabinet Member for Children’s Services
  • Councillor Manda Rigby (Bathwick) Cabinet Member for Highways
  • Councillor Tim Ball (Twerton) Cabinet Member for Neighbourhood Services
  • Councillor Matt McCabe (Bathavon South) Cabinet Member for Built Environment & Sustainable Development  

The following cabinet project leads, who will provide support to cabinet members,   have also been appointed as follows:

  • Leader and Built Environment & Sustainable Development: Councillor Deborah Collins (Widcombe and Lyncombe)
  • Council Priorities and Delivery and Highways: Councillor Lucy Hodge (Lansdown)
  • Climate Emergency and Sustainable Travel: Councillor Oli Henman (Walcot)
  • Highways: Councillor Joel Hirst (Odd Down)

In addition to the cabinet roles the Annual Meeting appointed a new Chair of the Council, Councillor Sarah Moore (Twerton).  The Vice-Chair of Council is Councillor Karen Walker (Peasedown).

At the meeting Councillor Guy set out how the new cabinet roles would serve the residents of Bath and North East Somerset. 

He said: “We are proud of our track record running Bath and North East Somerset Council for the last four years and our new cabinet team will continue to deliver on our ambitious vision for all communities across the district.  We want to be an exemplar council for climate action, invest in cleaner, safer streets and provide more travel choices. We continue to prioritise affordable houses in the right locations and we will focus our efforts on ensuring the whole area continues to thrive economically.  Looking after our vulnerable children and adults and ensuring support for mental health and wellbeing will also be a key focus over the next four years.”    

Cabinet meetings and full council meetings are webcast and available on our Youtube channel. The calendar of meetings is published on the council website. ” 


  1. I absolutely agree. One starting point would be to make all Heritage Statements in planning conform to the new Historic England template. Yes it takes longer but too many appllications just apply the listing – which is frequently wrong. A cabinet member for Heritage could cover so many questions which are raised – from closure of paths which have been used for decades but not officially designated, like those at the grounds of the American Museum, to planning, to overseeing the quality of services offered to tourists. I hear too many unqualified guides spouting absolute nonsense – how about a standard for guiding? If someone on the council wants to discuss this, I’m sure both you, Richard, and I would be happy to be on a working party.

  2. I suppose it’s something that they had their photo taken in the Guildhall. In the recent planning application for, of all places, the Guildhall foyer the Council’s address was given as Keynsham Civic Centre, BS31. And in their recent manifesto BathNES LibDems proudly claimed to have made this small market town with a Bristol postcode (population 19,600) “our main base of Council operations”. Under Bath City Council the Council had its offices spread throughout the centre of Bath (population 101,557) so councillors and officers would have to experience the city daily and at first hand. I can’t help thinking it made a difference.

  3. Hear hear – appalling. There needs to be a dedicated councillor in charge of heritage and listed properties, with planning department being forced to comply with environmental and sustainable actions, as well as the wider heritage implications adn attractions of Bath as a WHC. Kirsten is right

  4. ‘provide more travel choices.’

    Richard, let’s hope Councillor Guy fights to keeps the buses we may lose, the 94 and the one that the 90 year old lady petitioned about.

    1. Put yourself up on the Heritage ticket for next election. Get my vote – if in my Ward of course….

  5. Why am I not surprised? The Tories may have been lacklustre but this lot is just disgraceful. They care nothing for culture and heritage. The Victoria Art Gallery is being run down. The Fashion Museum is unlikely to come back to the city. All this council seems to peddle is lies, dodgy property deals, and gaslighting the public. I can’t understand why you were such a supporter of these charlatans, Richard. Now we have no effective opposition and a council that’s arrogant and never listens. Bath is in grave danger and possibly will lose its World Heritage Status. Still, never mind, we’ve got e-scooters, unused cycle lanes and we’re saving the planet. It’s enough to make a grown man weep.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *