PAM BATES was unveiled as the new Mayor of Tonbridge & Malling at the Borough Council’s annual meeting on May 15, succeeding Roger Dalton in the role.
Cllr Bates was elected as the representative for Trench ward in the town in 2011.
She was born in 1948 in Penshurst in 1948 and attended the village’s primary school. Then she studied at Hillview in Tonbridge and Constables Commercial College in Tunbridge Wells.
In 1969 she moved to Tonbridge and later settled in Trench ward, where she still lives.
She married her husband Keith in 1977 and they have five children, four girls and one boy, and seven grandchildren.
Pam, who is now retired, worked as a secretary at Geering & Colyer Estate Agents and Wiltshire Building Contractors before becoming PA to the Chairman and Managing Director of R Durtnell & Sons, the UK’s oldest family-owned builders.
Since her husband died in 2008 she has dedicated herself to helping others, and has served on the committee of the Six In One Community Centre for over 30 years.
Cllr Bates said: ‘I thoroughly enjoyed my year as Deputy Mayor serving the community of Tonbridge and Malling and I’m really looking forward to continuing this work in my role as Mayor this year.
‘It will be an honour to help raise awareness of all the fantastic work carried out by volunteers, community groups, schools and businesses and to meet more residents during my travels around the borough.’
In her year of office she has chosen to support Tonbridge charity Tree of Hope, which helps young people with disability or illness by supporting their families to raise the funds they need to pay for specialist care that is not freely available through the NHS.
The Deputy Mayor for the coming year is Jill Anderson, who represents Hadlow and East Peckham ward.
PICTURE: CHAIN OF COMMAND Pam Bates with outgoing Mayor Roger Dalton