TRAFFORD's new mayor is the youngest in town hall history and he says he is looking forward to the year ahead as he takes over ceremonial duties from former mayor Cllr Coupe.

Cllr Tom Ross, who represents Stretford, took up the chain of office during a ceremony at Trafford Town Hall on Wednesday.

Cllr Ross, who took his seat in the chamber in 2008, thanked those who supported his appointment as mayor.

Urmston councillor Anne Duffield was appointed mayoress, while St Mary’s ward councillor, Rob Chilton, was elected deputy mayor.

Labour’s Jane Baugh, who represents Priory, said she was ‘delighted’ to nominate Cllr Ross for the position.

“You have served your residents so well – and continue to do so,” she added.

“We are incredibly proud of you and I hope your mayoral year will be special and different.

“On behalf of every member of the Labour group we wish you a very fulfilling year and we will all do are very best to support your chosen charities.”

The charities he has chosen to support over the next 12 months are Trafford Mencap and St Ann’s Syrian Refugee Project.  

Conservative councillor Rob Chilton said in an era of ‘political tribalism’ it was a pleasure to work with a ‘councillor like Tom’.

He added: “Tom is genuine, kind, warm, decent and passionate about the community he represents.

“He has the right qualities and experience to do a fantastic job as mayor.”

Liberal Democrat leader Ray Bowker said to take on the roll as Trafford’s mayor was a ‘special honour’.

He added: “You leave politics behind for a year and become the ambassador for Trafford.

“It is considerably hard work but most enjoyable – and I’m sure it will result in being a highlight of your life.”

Cllr Tom Ross has represented Stretford Ward since May 2008. He has served as Labour’s Spokesperson for Finance and before that was Labour’s Spokesperson for Supporting Children and Families.

He lives in Stretford but grew up in Timperley and attended Heyes Lane Infant & Junior School and Altrincham Grammar School for Boys, where he set up the School’s Student Council.

He also attended the London School of Economics where he was awarded a BSc in Economic History.

In 2010, Cllr Ross was Labour’s parliamentary candidate for Altrincham & Sale West.

His work history includes managing Kate Green MP’s constituency office, being a Retail Branch Manager for HSBC and also working for Sainsbury’s in Sale.

He is currently a governor at Victoria Park Junior School in Stretford and was previously a governor at Stretford High School.

Tom’s chosen charities for the year are Trafford Mencap and St Ann’s Community Refugee Project (a project led by St Ann’s Church and supported by Stretford United- a group of students from Stretford High School and Stretford Grammar).