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Chairman's Column - 25 October 2021

Published on Tuesday, 26th October 2021

Long Serving Member – Councillor Brian Beale MBE

“One of the longest serving members of Maldon District Council is Councillor Brian Beale, who has represented residents of Southminster as an Independent Councillor since 1987. He is a highly principled, modest and polite man and someone whom I have always highly respected, and often turned to for sound advice.

“Born in Southminster in 1941, Brian left school at 15 to become a clerk for British Rail at Southminster Railway Station. His main career was at Bradwell Power Station where he worked from 1960 until he retired in 1991. He was a passionate and active sportsman in his youth working over several years as a ski instructor in Austria and playing football and competitive hockey for Maldon District. He has continued to promote and support local sporting activities and was Chairman AND President of the Marsh Marathon Sports Committee which at one time boasted 1000 competitors running 26 miles around the Dengie. Part of his sporting legacy continues today as Southminster Tennis Club members play for the ‘Brian Beale Trophy’ which he donated over 50 years ago and still personally presents to the winners. He was recognized as a Community Champion by HM The Queen in the 2012 New Year’s Honours list when he was awarded an MBE for services to local government in Essex (Maldon).

“Brian was Leader of the Opposition when I joined the Council in 2010 and the first person to approach me offering an opportunity to join an Independent Group, promising I would retain my independence and have a free vote on any Council matters. Being a man of his word, he has never tried to influence me to vote a certain way and when Independent Councillor Mike Wood left the group, I became Deputy Leader of the Opposition and was very happy to support him. Brian is currently appointed to a number of committees including the District Planning Committee and the South Eastern Area Planning Committee. He serves on the Overview & Scrutiny Committee and also when it meets as The Crime and Disorder Committee. He is also on the Licensing Committee and Licensing Sub-Committee.

“Following the May 2019 elections when many more Independent Councillors were elected, Brian recognised things move on and he suggested to me that we switched roles and I became Opposition Leader and he would be Deputy which was supported by the new Independent members. In November 2020 the Administration of the Council changed, I became Chairman of the Council and the Independent administration voted for Councillor Wendy Stamp to take over the role as Leader.

“Maldon District still owes a great deal to Brian who has seen it all before and still has much to offer and I am proud to call him my friend. I hope you enjoyed reading about him.“

Councillor Mark S. Heard
Chairman of Maldon District Council