The neighbouring Gloucestershire towns of Stroud and Stonehouse both have Green Party mayors for the first time ever, following the unanimous election of Cllr Stella Parkes by Stroud Town Council and Cllr Carol Kambites by Stonehouse Town Council.
Both were elected on May 15 at the annual meetings of their respective councils.
It is the second term as Mayor for Cllr Parkes, who represents Stroud Central ward, while Cllr Kambites takes over after four years as Deputy Mayor.
Stella, who was born in Stroud and went to Stroud High School, has been a councillor since 2020. She was elected as Mayor last year when Green Mayor Cllr Kevin Cranston stepped down after seven consecutive years in the role (in total he had been Mayor for 10 years).
Stella is deputy chair of the Regeneration committee and serves on the Consultation & Highways and Finance & Policy committees.
A former careers adviser, journalist and public relations consultant, Stella is chair of Trustees at Stroud Valleys Project, where she co-founded the SVP eco shop.
Carol has been on Stonehouse Town Council for 12 years and is the council’s first Green Mayor. A retired teacher and research fellow, she serves on the Town Business Committee and Town Environment Committee and a number of working groups, and chairs the Stonehouse Community Climate Action Forum.
A keen cyclist and walker, she is involved with Stonehouse Walking Festival and the campaign to re-open Stonehouse Bristol Road station. She is also Chair of Stroud Valleys Cycle Campaign.
Stella said: “I want to thank the Stroud town councillors for voting me back for a second term as mayor. It is a great honour to represent the town. I look forward to helping to create a thriving and sustainable community and a place that residents are proud to call home.”
Carol said: “I’m honoured and delighted to have been elected as mayor. Stonehouse Town Council has a lot of exciting projects in progress and in the pipeline. I’m looking forward to working with my fellow councillors and the people of Stonehouse to tackle the twin emergencies of climate change and the cost of living – and to make our town an even better place to live, work and play.”
Pictured: Stella (left) and Carol with Carla Denyer, co-leader of the Green Party, during her recent visit to Stroud District. Photographer: Gill Thomas at Mouse About Town