NORTHUMBERLAND Labour has elected a new leadership team to take it into the next elections in two years' time.

Members of the party elected Coun. Susan Dungworth as leader and Coun. Scott Dickinson as deputy leader at Northumberland Labour Group's AGM on Thursday, April 18.

It follows the resignations of Coun. Grant Davey and Coun. Davey Ledger, who headed up the council during the Labour administration between 2013 and 2017.

Coun. Dungworth is the first woman to lead the Labour Party in Northumberland, and would be the first female leader of the council if Labour won the next election.

Coun Dungworth paid tribute to Coun. Davey's leadership.

She said: "It is an absolute privilege to take over the leadership of the Labour group here in Northumberland.

"This comes at a time of crisis, with the Tory Government’s slash-and-burn approach to councils being amplified locally.

"The Labour group as a team will be open and forward-looking, seeking to engage with local people, organisations and community groups.

"I look forward to personally meeting with as many people as possible in the coming weeks, months and years.

"I would also like to place on record my thanks to my predecessor, Coun Grant Davey, who had served the group since 2008. Grant was always a passionate advocate for Northumberland and led the county while doing all possible to mitigate against Tory government austerity.”

Coun Dickinson, formerly chairman of the Labour group, added: "Both Susan and I are determined to deliver a Labour administration at County Hall that will work together with local people to build a Northumberland that works for the many.

"Austerity is tearing apart the fabric of our communities and thousands of young people are being left behind.

"The Labour group is determined that we will provide opportunities for our young people and ensure that we deliver the quality services that help people throughout their lives.”