New leader of Rochford District Council appointed

Cllr Simon Wootton has been appointed the new leader of Rochford District Council, following a meeting of annual council last night, Thursday July 9.

Cllr Wootton, who was formerly Portfolio Holder for Enterprise, is also ward member for Roche North and Rural.

He said: “It is an honour and privilege to be the new leader of Rochford District Council.

“You have my assurance that I will give the role my full commitment and I, and my administration, will do our very best in the interests of residents, businesses, and those who visit the district.

“After several months of this dreadful pandemic, it would be quite wrong not to take this opportunity to acknowledge and thank officers, and our service provider partners for the fantastic way in which they have maintained business as usual council services.

“Weekly household waste collection services have continued uninterrupted, open spaces maintained; litter collected as well as the myriad of other support services which the council provides on a daily basis.”

Cllr Wootton also recognised the success of a raft of measures taken during the pandemic to support local residents and businesses, including:

  • The Rochford District Community Response Hub, which was launched in fast time as a collaboration with local faith community and partner organisations in order to support the most vulnerable in the district.
  • The council’s distribution of £18m in government funded grants to approximately 1700 local businesses.
  • The ‘We Are Back’ campaign, which has been launched to safely welcome people back to local businesses in our towns and villages, supported by a website which accessible at

Cllr Wootton takes over from Cllr Mike Steptoe, who served as leader of Rochford District Council since May 2019 and remains ward councillor for Roche South.

The full Executive is shown below:

  • Deputy Leader  – Cllr Cheryl Roe
  • Community  –  Cllr Mike Webb
  • Enterprise  – Temporary arrangement until Portfolio Holder appointed
  • Environment  –  Cllr Arthur Williams
  • Finance  – Cllr Simon Smith
  • IT and Communications  – Cllr Daniel Efde
  • Planning  – Cllr Ian Ward

Mick Ferris

Editor Email: [email protected]