FORMER Wigan Council leader Lord Peter Smith has been shortlisted for a prestigious award.

The Leigh West councillor, who has served his community since being elected 41 years ago, is in the running to win the Lifetime Achievement accolade at the 2019 Cllr Achievement Awards.

The awards has the only national ceremony which celebrates the work of councillors.

Lord Smith served as chairman of finance at the council before becoming leader for 27 years from 1991 to 2018.

Leigh Journal:

He held many positions in the 1980s and 1990s including chairman of the North West Regional Assembly and vice president of the Local Government Association.

He also chaired the Association of Greater Manchester Authorities and Greater Manchester Health. He is currently chairman of the Leadership Centre.

In 1999, he was given the title, Lord Smith of Leigh, in recognition of his work in local government.

Lord Smith said: "I'm delighted and honoured to be nominated for this lifetime achievement award.

"It has been my privilege to serve the people of Leigh and the wider borough for over 40 years.

"Over these years I have had the opportunity to work with many great colleagues who have contributed to our successes.

"I'm particularly proud of Leigh Sports Village (LSV) which is much more than a sports stadium but has put our town on the world stage.

"I’m not intending to retire just yet and I’m working hard on health in Greater Manchester, LSV and improving Leigh as a place.”

The Local Government Information Unit (LGiU) and CCLA organise the awards.

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LGiU chief executive Jonathan Carr-West said: “For the tenth year, LGiU is proud to honour the hard work of councillors across England and Wales that so often goes unrecognised.

"This year’s shortlist is by far one of the most impressive we have seen to date, showcasing the achievements of the best and brightest councillors up and down the country.

"These councillors deliver for their communities in increasingly challenging and hostile times alongside severe budget constraints.

"Despite all of that and more, their determination and resolve has left their communities safer, stronger and healthier, thanks to their efforts.

"We would like to congratulate all of those councillors shortlisted and look forward to announcing the winners in November.”

Winners will be announced at the Cllr Achievement Awards ceremony on Tuesday, November, 5 at the Royal Horseguards Hotel in Westminster.