Newly elected Wealden District Councillors take their seats

20th May

Heathfield South saw a close run race between the Independent candidate Kevin Benton and the winner – Conservative Tom Guyton-Day, with only 250 votes between the candidates. Heathfield North was also retained by the Conservatives. Local election turnouts are notoriously low and this election was no exception. This is worth remembering, because although Wealden District Councillors are elected officials, they are voted for by a small percentage of the population. The majority did not vote.*

First face to face Full Council Meeting

It was the first face to face meeting of the Full Council since February 2020 which also welcomed four newly elected Wealden District Councillors. Michael Baker (Heathfield North), Tom Guyton-Day (Heathfield South), Paul Holbrook (Hailsham North), and Kevin Balsdon (Hailsham South).

At the annual meeting of Wealden’s Full Council on 19 May, Councillor Ron Reed (Crowborough Central) was elected Chairman of the Council for the next year. Cllr Angela Snell (Polegate Central) was elected Vice Chairman.

Outgoing Charirman – Councillor Pam Doodes welcomes the new Chairman Cllr Reed

The departing Chairman of two years, Councillor Pam Doodes, thanked Members and Officers of the Council for their support during her time in office. During this time, Cllr Doodes has worked tirelessly in support of Wealden businesses and local charities, and continued to do so despite the challenges of the pandemic. Last year 21 local people and groups were recognised in the Chairman’s Community Awards, which celebrated Wealden’s COVID Community Heroes. 

In nominating Cllr Reed, Cllr Doodes said: “During the past two years Ron Reed has been a great help and support to me, always there with a listening ear and always willing to step in when the need arises.” In response to Cllr Doodes’ kind words, Cllr Reed said “It’s been a pleasure helping Pam, and I’m looking forward to a good year.”

Chairman of the Council Cllr Reed and Vice Chairman Angela Snell

Following Cllr Reed’s unopposed election to Chairman of Council, both Trevor Scott, Chief Executive, and Council Leader Bob Standley offered their congratulations. 

Cllr Angela Snell was then elected Vice Chairman following an address to Council by Cllr David Watts, in which he described her as “very proactive” and a “team and community player”.  

In response to her election of Vice Chairman Cllr Snell said: “Thank you very much. I look forward greatly to working with Ron and all of you in the year to come; facing the challenges that the year will bring because of the national situation and the issues we face locally.”

Wealden’s next meeting of Full Council is scheduled for 10:00am on 21 July. For more information about the civic role of the Chairman visit:

The newly elected Wealden councillors will no doubt look forward to hearing from the people of Heathfield on subjects dear to their hearts.

Councillor Michael Baker – Heathfield North

Yew Tree Farm Cottage
Little London Road
Cross in Hand
TN21 0LU

07785 233464

Councillor Tom Guyton-Day – Heathfield South

Little Pig Farm
Punnetts Town
East Sussex
TN21 9PD

07565 253537

  • 2,249 votes in total for Heathfield North & South combined