SANDWELL'S new civic leader has announced she will retire from her job as a GP having been elected as mayor.

Dr Ann Jaron, who has served Sandwell Council in the Abbey ward for 23 years, was elected as the new mayor at a full meeting of the authority on Tuesday (May 21).

And Dr Jaron, who turns 60 next month, immediately announced that she will retire as a GP, from her Edgbaston practice, in August to devote more time to her new civic duties. Her chosen consort is her sister Eve Keeling.

She also said that her chosen mayoral charities for her year in office will be Sandwell Young Carers and Brushstrokes – which is based in the borough.

Councillor Suzanne Hartwell, who represents Oldbury, was elected as the new Deputy Mayor of Sandwell and her consort is partner Geoffrey Deakin.

Members of Dr Jaron’s family, including cousins who had travelled over from New Zealand, were in attendance as she was sworn into the role.

She said: “It is certainly a great honour which carries great responsibility and I hope to live up to your expectations.

“I feel very fortunate that Councillor Suzanne Hartwell has agreed to be the deputy mayor.

“Many people ask how I manage both roles and it is quite difficult to juggle them. I reduced to a part time role but feel a little bit more time would be quite nice.

“I turn 60 next month and have decided to retire from my role as a GP in August which will give me more time to fulfil my duties.”

Tributes and votes of thanks were also given to the outgoing mayor and deputy, Joy Edis and Carol Goult at the meeting.