Young mayor for Suffolk town

STOWMARKET could have just broken its own record as it is thought it has just elected the youngest ever mayor in its history.Keith Scarff, a 37-year-old production manager, took over from outgoing mayor John Drake this week and is now looking forward to being the town's ambassador and raising funds for charity.

STOWMARKET could have just broken its own record as it is thought it has just elected the youngest ever mayor in its history.

Keith Scarff, a 37-year-old production manager, took over from outgoing mayor John Drake this week and is now looking forward to being the town's ambassador and raising funds for charity.

Married to 34-year-old Sarah, he has taken up his new role after less than four years as a town councillor and one year as deputy mayor.

Mr Scarff, of Lindsey Way, Stowmarket, said: "It's going to be quite a challenge. I am really looking forward to finding out more about what goes on in the town and during my year as deputy mayor I have been amazed at the vibrancy of the voluntary sector in Stowmarket.

"I am looking forward to going out to their meetings, AGMs, concerts and being a good ambassador.

"I have served as a town councillor for less than four years and it is very unusual to choose someone who has been in office for such a short time.

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"I believe I am the youngest mayor so far. I am very pleased they have picked me, it's a great honour and a privilege.''

Mr Scarff is now deciding which charities to support during his year in office. He said he had received many requests, but is now in the process of narrowing it down to just two.

The town's new deputy mayor is 53-year-old farm worker Barry Salmon, of Finborough Road, Stowmarket, who is married to fellow town councillor Heather.

Following his appointment he said he felt privileged to be given the chance to serve the town in such a way.

Mr Scarff's predecessor Mr Drake, a 45-year-old salesman married to Sharon, said he had enjoyed his year-long spell as mayor.

In those 12 months he has raised more than £2,500 for the Mid Suffolk branch of the Alzheimers Society and the Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents.