John ‘honoured’ to be Sheffield’s first citizen

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HE’S spent the last 20 years speaking up for thousands of hospital staff - now trade unionist John Campbell is representing a whole city after taking the chain of office as Sheffield’s 116th Lord Mayor.

The 55-year-old Labour councillor, who represents Richmond, told of his pride at being chosen for the role.

Coun Campbell, whose partner Catherine Taylor will serve as his Lady Mayoress, faces a demanding schedule with Diamond Jubilee events, and a send-off for Sheffield athletes competing at the London Olympics among his first engagements.

He said: “Having been born and brought up in Sheffield, I remember as a youngster the presence the Lord Mayor could bring to events. I never dreamed that 45 years on I would have the honour of being Sheffield’s first citizen.”

As the first black man to be Lord Mayor, Coun Campbell, health convenor for trade union Unison, added: “The message I want to emphasise is celebrating multi-cultural Sheffield.”

Coun Campbell said he would be raising money for Weston Park Hospital, partly in memory of his late friend and fellow trade union convenor at Sheffield Council contractor Kier, Bob Fox, who died of cancer nearly two years ago.

He will also be supporting the Bluebell Wood Children’s Hospice appeal, and youth development organisation Sheffield Academy of Young Leaders.

At the ceremony where Coun Campbell received the chains of office, outgoing Lord Mayor Sylvia Dunkley said she wanted to thank the people of Sheffield for a ‘fantastic’ year in the role.

Coun Dunkley has raised £27,500 for British Heart Foundation and Sheffield Royal Society for the Blind.