Rugby council leader of five years will step down

Rugby council leader Michael Stokes, pictured previously outside Rugby's town hall.
Rugby council leader Michael Stokes, pictured previously outside Rugby's town hall.

Rugby council leader Michael Stokes will step down on May 16 after five years as leader of Rugby's Conservative group and, by extension, leader of the council.

Cllr Stokes made the announcement at the Rugby Borough Council Conservative Group annual general meeting.

And this morning, May 8, he took to social media to make the announcement publicly.

He said: "After considerable thought, at the Rugby Borough Council Conservative Group AGM held on Tuesday 7th May, I took the difficult decision not to seek re-selection as group leader.

"As of May 1st, I took on a new role with my employer which involves more responsibility and will not allow me the flexibility I feel needed to continue as leader.

"I’ve thoroughly enjoyed the last five years as leader of the council [and] am grateful for the support I’ve received and the experiences it has given me."

He said he will continue as council leader until the annual council meeting on Thursday, May 16, where a new council leader will be elected.

Cllr Stokes will remain the Conservative councillor for the Admirals and Cawston ward.

The news comes after Rugby's May 2 local elections, which saw the Conservatives retain their position as the controlling group in the council.