FORMER West Dorset council leader Tony Alford has left the Dorset Council Cabinet with a second woman, Jill Haynes, joining the otherwise all male group alongside Laura Miller.

The only other changes at the annual council meeting were Weymouth councillor Tony Ferrari swopping the finance brief with economic growth and assets portfolio holder Gary Suttle.

Six new ‘lead councillor’ roles have been created to support portfolio holders although will not be Cabinet members. Each will get an additional payment of £10,000 in addition to their £13,000 basic allowance.

Cllr Spencer Flower remains council leader and Cllr Peter Wharf deputy leader.

Said Cllr Flower: “The changes that I have announced will come into force with immediate effect and are designed to enable portfolio holders to manage large and complex portfolios and to help drive the transformation programme in the provision of services.

“In addition to some changes in responsibility areas, I have, in discussion with Cabinet colleagues identified a need for there to be additional support for three of the cabinet portfolios as we move forward with a significant agenda for the year ahead. This support will be provided by six lead members.

“As a number of strategic programmes start to gather pace, I will keep this new arrangement under review.”

The portfolio holder and lead members are:

Governance, performance & communications - Cllr Spencer Flower (Leader)

Corporate development & change - Cllr Peter Wharf (Deputy Leader)

Highways, travel & environment - Cllr Ray Bryan, with lead member for highways - Cllr Cherry Brooks and lead member for environment, travel and harbours - Cllr Noc Lacey-Clarke

People - children, education, skills & early Help - Cllr Andrew Parry, lead member for education – Cllr Byron Quayle and lead member for safeguarding - Cllr Jane Somper

People – adult social care & health - Cllr Laura Miller, with lead Member for care - Cllr Simon Gibson and lead member for health - Cllr Piers Brown

Finance, commercial and capital strategy - Cllr Gary Suttle

Economic growth, assets & property - Cllr Tony Ferrari

Planning - Cllr David Walsh

Customer & community services - Cllr Jill Haynes

Housing & community safety - Cllr Graham Carr-Jones