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Chairman of the Council

Who is the Chairman and Vice Chairman of the council?

The Chairman of East Riding of Yorkshire Council is Councillor John Dennis and he will be accompanied on civic engagements by his Lady, Mrs Jennifer Dennis:

Photograph of Chairman and Consort (pdf 224kb opens in new window)

The Vice Chairman of East Riding of Yorkshire Council is Councillor Caroline Fox and she will be accompanied on civic engagements by her son as Consort, Mr Robert Fox.

Photograph of Vice Chairman and Consort (pdf 221kb opens in new window)

A list of past chairmen of East Riding of Yorkshire Council can be viewed below:

Past Chairmen of the Council (pdf 85kb opens in new window)

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What is the Chairman’s role?

Since its creation in 1996, East Riding of Yorkshire Council took the decision not to call their Civic Head a Mayor but decided upon the title of Chairman and, in that capacity, it is their duty to represent and promote East Riding of Yorkshire Council at all civic and ceremonial events as well as chairing council meetings.

The Chairman attends a variety of events and functions within the East Riding of Yorkshire organised by businesses, churches, local organisations, parish and town councils and many other organisations throughout the county and further afield if there is an East Riding connection. The Chairman also attends events which are organised by council departments, such as opening of community homes, schools, youth clubs and museum exhibitions to name but a few.

The position of Chairman is held by a councillor who is appointed at the council's annual general meeting held in May. The position is held for a period of one year and is apolitical.

During their civic year, the Chairman may also choose to raise money for charity through fundraising events.

A Vice Chairman is also appointed to represent the Chairman should they be unable to attend an event.

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How do I contact/invite the Chairman to my event?

If you wish to invite the Chairman of the Council to attend your event please complete a Request a visit form (opens in a new window) .

Alternatively please contact the Civic Officeby the following means:

In writing:

Civic Office
East Riding of Yorkshire Council
County Hall
Cross Street
Beverley
HU17 9BA

By email: civic.office@eastriding.gov.uk

Telephone: (01482) 393260

Please do not contact the Chairman directly or send correspondence to their home. All communication must be done through the Civic Office.

When inviting the Chairman, please give some thought to what you wish to achieve by having the Chairman at your function and what you would like the Chairman to do. This may include making a presentation, receiving a cheque, reading a lesson, making a speech or drawing a raffle.

It would be useful if you could provide some background information about your organisation and the event, this is especially important if you wish the Chairman to make a speech.

Please also bear in mind that the Chairman often has several civic engagements throughout the day and will need to leave your event on time in order to maintain their schedule.

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How will my invitation be dealt with?

All invitations received will be discussed with the Chairman and a decision made depending upon the civic diary. If the Chairman is available to attend your event an acceptance letter or email will be sent to the named organiser together with an attendance form and guidance on the protocol to be observed. The attendance form must be completed and returned to the civic office to arrive prior to the date of the event.

In the event that the Chairman is unable to attend, the invitation will be passed onto the Vice Chairman for consideration and the appropriate response sent.

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What happens on the day of my event?

The Chairman will arrive at your event by civic car at the time you stated on the attendance form and they should be met upon arrival. It would be useful if a parking space can be reserved for the civic car and you are asked to ensure that the Chairman is looked after at all times during their visit.

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How do I verbally address the Chairman?

When introducing it should be 'Chairman of East Riding of Yorkshire Council, Councillor …' or referring to the Chairman in a speech of any description, they should be addressed as 'Chairman of the council'. If speaking on a one to one basis, the correct form of address is 'Mr. Chairman', if a gentleman, or 'Madam Chairman', if a lady.

If making a speech and the Lord-Lieutenant is in attendance and other visiting dignitaries whether Lord Mayors or Town Mayors, the order in which they should be addressed at the beginning of a speech is 'Lord-Lieutenant, High Sheriff, Chairman, Distinguished Guest, Ladies and Gentlemen'.

Further advice or clarification on protocol can be sought from the Civic Office.

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What is the correct order in which civic dignitaries should be placed?

The Lord-Lieutenant of the East Riding of Yorkshire (which for ceremonial purposes includes the East Riding of Yorkshire and the City of Kingston upon Hull) is The Queen's representative and, if attending the event, takes precedence over all local dignitaries. If not in attendance, the Chairman of East Riding of Yorkshire Council has precedence within the East Riding of Yorkshire over all visiting dignitaries including Lord Mayors and Town Mayors but not the High Sheriff of the East Riding of Yorkshire if they are present.

Therefore, the order of precedence should be Lord-Lieutenant of the East Riding of Yorkshire, High Sheriff of the East Riding of Yorkshire, Chairman of East Riding of Yorkshire Council, visiting Lord Mayors, Mayors and Town Mayors.

Further advice or clarification on protocol can be sought from the Civic Office.

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Which organisations are supported as part of the Chairman's Charity Appeal?

The Chairman's Charity Appeal for 2016/17 will be supporting the following organisation:

Any donations would be gratefully received. Cheques should be made payable to ‘ERYC Chairman’s Charity Appeal’ and sent to:


The Civic Office,
East Riding of Yorkshire Council,
County Hall,
Beverley,
HU17 9BA,

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Does the Chairman wear a chain?

When attending at official events, the Chairman wears a chain and badge of office which belonged to the former Humberside County Council.  The chain was designed by local designer, Miss Jacqueline Stieger, who collected the stones from along the East Coast but mostly from the beach at Hornsea. The stones vary in size and shape and it is said that the links which do not house a stone represent the lost towns and villages of the East Riding and its coast. The Chairman's badge of office has the council’s coat of arms within the centre.

To fact sheet below provides more information on the Chairman's chain and the badge of office:

Fact sheet on the Chairman's chain and badge of office (pdf 340kb opens in new window)

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What are the Chairman’s Awards?

The Chairman's Awards are presented annually by the council to individuals, companies and organisations with the East Riding of Yorkshire in recognition of their achievements towards enhancing the area in which they work and live.

Anyone can forward nominations for the following categories:

  • Chairman's Built Heritage Award for Single, New Dwellings, Conversions and Minor Works
  • Chairman's Built Heritage Awards for Commercial Development and Major Schemes
  • Chairman's Business Award for Businesses with Under 50 Employees
  • Chairman’s Business Award for Business with Over 51 Employees
  • Chairman's Community Award for Groups
  • Chairman's Community Awards for Individuals
  • Chairman's Environment Award for Environmental Projects
  • Chairman's Sport Award for Outstanding Team/Club of the Year 
  • Chairman's Sport Award for Talented Performer

 

Find out more on how to nominate someone for an award.

A list of past winners of the Chairman's Awards can be viewed below:

Past winners (pdf 50kb opens in new window)

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How do I nominate someone for a Chairman's Award?

To nominate someone for a Chairman's award, you must complete an official nomination form and send this, along with with supporting papers, to the civic office or email them to chairmans.awards@eastriding.gov.uk:

Applications for nominations close on 31 January.

To make a nomination complete a nomination form online.

Nominate someone for a Chairman's award online

or download and complete the relevant nomination form below:

Built Heritage Award Nomination Form (word 341kb opens in new window)

Business Award Nomination Form (word 327kb opens in new window)

Community Award Nomination Form (word 307kb opens in new window)

Environment Award Nomination Form (word 318kb opens in new window)

Sports Award Nomination Form (word 312kb opens in new window)

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What is the difference between the Chairman and the Leader of the council?

The Chairman is the civic representative of the council and has no formal power on decision making except to chair council meetings where they must:

  • uphold and promote the purposes of the constitution, and interpret the constitution where necessary on advice from the Chief Executive,
  • preside over meetings of the council so that its business can be carried out efficiently and with regard to the rights of councillors and the interests of the community,
  • to ensure that the council meeting is a forum for the debate of matters of concern to the local community and the place at which councillor (who are not on the Cabinet) are able to hold the Cabinet to account,
  • to promote public involvement in the council's activities,
  • to be the conscience of the council; and,
  • to agree matters of special urgency to the extent permitted by the local authorities (Executive Arrangements) (Access to Information) (England) Regulations 2000 as amended.


The Leader is the political representative of the council and appoints the members of the Cabinet, this is the group of councillors who are responsible for taking many of the decisions about how the council’s services are delivered.

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