New Fylde mayor Ben Aitken looking forward to a very special year

‘Working together’ is the theme of Coun Ben Aitken’s year as Fylde mayor – and he hopes to help boost the coffers of three local charities while he holds the office.

By Tony Durkin
Thursday, 12th May 2022, 3:45 pm

“It’s a great honour to be Fylde mayor and I look forward to meeting lots of people in what is a very special year for events,” he said.

Coun Aitken is bringing down the curtain on 15 years as a Fylde councillor with his spell as first citizen, as he plans to step down from the role at the elections next May.

The charities he has chosen for his year’s mayoral appeal are Trinity Hospice, the 1st Lytham Scout Group based at St Cuthbert’s Church and Fylde Citizens Advice Bureau.

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The new mayor and mayoress of Fylde, Coun Ben Aitken and his wife Bernadette Nolan. Photo: Kelvin Stuttard

"There are all great causes and I hope we can raise lots of money for them,” said Coun Aitken.

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"Trinity does wonderful work of course, as does the Citizens Advice Bureau and I helped extend its outreach service, which has now available again at the town hall.

"My children thoroughly enjoyed being involved with the 1st Scout Group and we hope to help it raise funds for rowing boats it wants to take out on Fairhaven Lake.”

Fylde new deputy mayor and deputy mayoress, Coun Alan Clayton and his daughter Helen Ementon. Photo: Kelvin Stuttard

Mayoress for the year is Coun Aitken’s wife of 36 years, Bernadette Nolan. They have three children – Christopher, 33, now living in Australia, Alexander, 30 and Cathryn, 26, both still based locally.

Deputy mayor is Coun Alan Clayton, a Wesham representative on the council since 2011, who will be accompanied as deputy mayoress by his daughter Helen.

Coun Aitken represents Ansdell and is chairman of the Friends of Ansdell Institute, currently seeking charitable status in its bid to revive and maintain the landmark building.

He is also proud to have played a leading part in the formation of Ansdell in Bloom.

The new mayoral party with Fylde Council chief executive Allan Oldfield in the foyer of Lowther Pavilion, where the council's annual meeting took place

Before moving to Fylde, Coun Aitken worked in special needs education in Greater Manchester for many years and is particularly delighted that his first official function this week is a special needs music festival at Wrea Green.

"I’m lucky that my mayoral year features so many wonderful events and I’m really looking forward to the next 12 months,” he said.