A FORMER Stockton-on-Tees councillor has received Freedom of the Borough.
Stockton-on-Tees Borough Council conferred its highest ceremonial honour to Bob Gibson O.B.E at a meeting of the full Council last night (25 November).
The special accolade recognises his outstanding contribution to generations of people living across Stockton-on-Tees.
Leader of Stockton-on-Tees Borough Council, Councillor Bob Cook, said: “Bob was a first-class ward councillor and Leader who led the Council through the turbulent Local Government re-organisation of the 1990s culminating in Stockton becoming a unitary authority in 1996. He certainly helped drive the Council forward in its pursuit of excellence in all areas of service.
“His dedication to both Stockton-on-Tees and local government is admirable and he thoroughly deserves to be awarded Freedom of the Borough in recognition for his exceptional work and efforts which have undoubtedly improved the lives of generations of people living across our Borough.”
Speaking last night, Bob Gibson said: “I’m incredibly honoured to receive the Freedom of the Borough and to join such a distinguished list of recipients.”
Bob stepped down from Stockton-on-Tees Borough Council at the last election having served 34 years in local government in Stockton Borough, including 17 as Leader.
He was first elected to Cleveland County Council in 1981 and then onto Stockton-on-Tees Borough Council in 1982 where he remained as a councillor for the Newtown ward until earlier this year.
In recognition of the amount of time Bob was engaged with local government both regionally and nationally, he was awarded an O.B.E for his services to politics in 2006.
As well as Freedom of the Borough, Bob was also one of fourteen former councillors presented with Honorary Alderman of the Borough last night (25 November).
The Mayor, Councillor Ian Dalgarno, awarded the Alderman Badge to:
- Lynne Apedaile
- Dick Cains
- The late David Coleman whose award was collected posthumously by his wife, Councillor Eileen Johnson
- Alex Cunningham MP
- The late Maurice Frankland whose award was collected posthumously by his daughter, Emma Yates
- Bob Gibson
- Colin Leckonby
- Ken Lupton
- Bill Noble
- Maureen Rigg
- Fred Salt
- Steve Walmsley
- Mary Womphrey
- Mick Womphrey
Andrew Sherris and Jeremy Atkinson were also appointed Honorary Alderman but were not in attendance.