THE borough's next Mayor has been backed to do a "brilliant job" by the leader of Bury Council.

Cllr Jane Black will take over from current Mayor Dorothy Gunther next month after her appointment to the role was unanimously approved at a meeting of the full council.

After the vote council leader Rishi Shori told the chamber that Cllr Black had "dedicated her life to public service".

He said: "She spent over 23 years as a local government officer in Rochdale, Manchester and Salford, and I know how committed and passionate she is to local communities.

"And when she finished working life she extended her life in public service to become an elected member."

Describing Cllr Black, as "a colleague and a friend" he continued: "Ever since I've known Jane she has injected passion and enthusiasm into her roles.

"When she first joined the council in in 2012 she was a deputy cabinet member for health and wellbeing.

"She gave a lot of energy to the role and I don't think anyone can deny she has done a truly tremendous job as chairwoman of the planning committee.

"She has a tough act to follow but I know she will do a brilliant job and work hard to bring our communities together in the way only the Mayor of Bury can."

And Cllr Shori also hailed the contribution of that "tough act" — the outgoing Mayor, Cllr Dorothy Gunther.

Addressing Cllr Gunther, he said:"It has been an absolute pleasure working with you over the last 12 months, you probably had the toughest start of any leading Mayor could have given the atrocity of the Manchester Arena attack."

He added that Cllr Gunther had brought a "breath of fresh air" to the Mayorality and was one of the most genuine people he had ever met.

And he also paid warm tribute to three councillors who will not be defending their seats at May's local elections.

The Conservative's Ian Bevan is standing down after eight years service and Cllr Shori said he was "wished him well for the future."

He was not present at the meeting but Cllr Shori added: "I'm glad that he is standing down because he is an incredibly good politician that is probably the biggest compliment an opposition leader can give."

And Cllr Shori also thanked his outgoing Labour colleagues Sarah Kerrison and Paul Adams.

He added: "Cllr Kerrsion was chair of the health scrutiny committee at a difficult time with the closure of the walk-in centres but managed the process in a neutral way that saw a positive outcome."

Conservative leader James Daly also spoke to pay tribute to his "ward friend and colleague", Mayor Dorothy Gunther.

He said: "She had devoted a good number of years to public service in this borough and elsewhere. I think she carried out her duties in a wonderful caring outgoing compassionate manner which reflects the character I have known for a long time now."