Award for Harleston town clerk
A south Norfolk town clerk said she hoped to have restored residents' faith in local government after winning a prestigious national award. Harleston Town Council clerk Margot Harbour spoke of her shock after scooping the clerk of the year prize at the National Association of Local Councils (NALC) awards.
A south Norfolk town clerk said she hoped to have restored residents' faith in local government after winning a prestigious national award.
Harleston Town Council clerk Margot Harbour spoke of her shock after scooping the clerk of the year prize at the National Association of Local Councils (NALC) awards.
The top prize in the Local Council Awards 2010 comes after the clerk helped turn around the fortunes of the town council after the local authority almost went bankrupt two years ago after spending all of its reserves.
Mrs Harbour, who became clerk after council tax bills in Harleston and Redenhall went up more than 200pc last year, said she hoped the national award would restore faith in the town council.
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The prize comes only a year after the 43-year-old took on the part-time vacancy after being project officer for Harleston Development Partnership and Harleston Information Plus.
'I must admit I was shocked and I thought they were reading out the wrong category. It will be really good for the town and the council and the town can have faith in the council.'
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'I think it [the 200pc precept rise] did have an affect on the council to a certain extent. I took over at a time when things were bad and the bonus was there was only one way to go. It is a partnership and the councillors have worked hard with me this year to turn things around,' she said.
Mrs Harbour was presented with her trophy at a ceremony at One George Street, in London, on Thursday.
Jeremy Savage, the new chairman of South Norfolk Council, added: 'Congratulations to Margot on this fantastic achievement. The town and the whole of South Norfolk can be justly proud of her, after what has been a challenging year. She has been instrumental in bringing the community of Redenhall with Harleston together and helping to make it a fine place to live, work and visit.'