New chairman’s charity choice influenced by death of fellow councillors

Cllr David Bowater with Cllr Fiona Chapman
Cllr David Bowater with Cllr Fiona Chapman

The new Central Beds Council chairman says the deaths of two fellow councillors influenced his choice of charities for his time in the role.

Experienced Leighton Buzzard Councillor David Bowater officially took over from Cllr Caroline Maudlin, who has held the position for the past two years, at last week’s full council meeting, with Cllr Fiona Chapman elected as vice chairman.

He will act as an ambassador for the council, representing the authority on civic visits, at ceremonial events, as well as raising funds and awareness for his chosen charities, Multiple Sclerosis in Bedfordshire and Diabetes UK.

Speaking after his appointment, Councillor Bowater said: “I promise to do my best to live up to the wonderful example set by former chairman, Cllr Maudlin.

“I’d like to thank my peers for voting me into this position and I’d also like to thank my dear dad who inspired me on my current path by teaching me that just as much pleasure can be derived from giving as from receiving.

“I’ve followed that principal ever since through service to the community in Round Table and Rotary. In each of these organisations we give generously of that most precious commodity ‘time’.

“I will be following that principle throughout the year ahead: devoting my time to meeting many residents, local organisations and businesses and also to raising money for two causes that are very dear to my heart.

“The deaths of two of my fellow councillors, Tony Green and Alan Shadbolt, have inspired my choice of Diabetes UK as one of my two charities.”

Having grown up in the West Midlands, Cllr Bowater moved to Bedfordshire 14 years ago.

Cllr Bowater has been a ward councillor for Leighton Buzzard South since 2009, serving eight years in Leighton-Linslade Town Council and the former South Beds District Council, before becoming a Central Bedfordshire Councillor in 2009.

During the full council meeting Cllr Maudlin was thanked for raising around £53,000 during her time as chairman for her chosen charities, Breakthrough Breast Cancer and the Alzheimer’s Society.

> New chairman Councillor David Bowater is pictured adorning the vice chairman Councillor Fiona Chapman with the official vice chairman’s chain.