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Councillor's second turn as mayor lands her in history books

THE woman who oversaw the regeneration of Fulham Palace has been elected the borough’s mayor for a second time.
Councillor Frances Stainton is H&F's mayor for 2013/14.

THE woman who oversaw the regeneration of Fulham Palace has been elected the borough’s mayor for a second time.

Councillor Frances Stainton has become just the fifth mayor in the borough’s history to be chosen for more than one term, having previously served in 2011/12.

She succeeds Belinda Donovan and will have Adronie Alford as her deputy.

Mrs Stainton, who first became a councillor in 1990 and has served as a chief whip, chief of regeneration and a cabinet member for parks, culture and heritage, told a full council meeting after her election on Wednesday last week: “I appreciate the honour you do me with this second term and I shall serve our dear borough with all the commitment I deeply feel. This is helped by my mayoress and consorts who interestingly reflect the multinational, multiculture and multifaith make up of H&F.

“My mayoress is Australian Church of England. My consort Comte Edouard de Guitaut is a French Roman Catholic and Prince Mohsin is an Indian Muslim, while I am English with a dash of Celtic and French, Church of England but believing in the common thread of truth running through all faiths.”

Just like two years ago, Mrs Stainton’s chosen mayoral charity is Walking with the Wounded, which funds the re-training and re-education of wounded servicemen and women with the aim of helping them find long-term employment after they leave the Armed Forces.

To help locally, she has chosen another three charities to support: Albert and Friends Instant Circus, which works with children facing disadvantages; Care Leavers, from the borough’s Children in Care, which helps ‘looked after’ kids find a loving family; and The Daisy Trust, which benefits the whole community.

Mrs Stainton played a pivotal role in the regeneration of Fulham Palace, where she also held an exhibition of the borough’s treasures past and present. She has also sent some of the finest pieces from the Cecil French bequest of pre-Raphaelite paintings to exhibitions around the world.

As cabinet member for culture and heritage she was instrumental in bringing Heritage Lottery Funding to the borough for the much-wanted restoration of Bishops Park, Fulham Palace grounds and the ancient moat.

She has exhibited her own oil paintings in Paris, London and Rome. Her late husband was Suffolk MP, Keith Stainton.

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