Video: South Kirkby and South Elmsall councillor Laurie Harrison becomes new deputy mayor of Wakefield

A South Kirkby and South Elmsall councillor has become the new deputy mayor of Wakefield.

Laurie Harrison officially took on the role during a special ceremony at County Hall, in Wakefield, yesterday (Thursday).

It means Coun Harrison, who has served as a councillor since the creation of the district council in 1974, will be made mayor in 2014.

But for the next year he will serve under Brian Holmes, who has become the new Mayor of Wakefield.

Coun Harrison exchanged jovial kisses on the cheek with Coun Holmes as he was presented his deputy chains during light-hearted formal proceedings.

Coun Holmes is a Horbury and South Ossett councillor, and was first elected in 1997.

He was passed the robe and chains from outgoing mayor Elaine Blezard during an event, which had plenty of laughs.

Deputy leader Denise Jeffery, who proposed Con Holmes for mayor, produced a red and yellow card during her nomination speech, referring to his time as a referee.

She looked at fellow Labour councillor and leader Peter Box as she said Coun Holmes may need the cards for the “more rebellious members”.

During his welcoming speech Coun Holmes said: “While representing our district I promise to do my best to live up to the very high standard expected of the position of the mayor.

“I promise that I will try to be an excellent ambassador for the district and the council.

“I will endeavour to promote the image and importance of Wakefield.”

He added: “I promise to be tolerant in the way that I chair and conduct our council meetings and I will try and never lose my patience and retain a helpful good sense of humour.”

Coun Holmes’ wife and former mayor Janet will be his mayoress.

Coun Blezard was thanked for her “busy” term in office, which included meeting Princess Anne during a visit to Stanley Ferry.