Tributes to former council chief standing down as 'health fails him'
Alan Kerr, a former deputy leader of South Tyneside Council, has stepped down from the Monkton seat he held for 22 years.
A member of the Labour Party since boyhood, he went on to hold some of the local authority’s most senior jobs, but it has been confirmed he is resigning for ‘personal reasons’.
“Cllr Alan Kerr stepped down as councillor during the last week,” said long-term council colleague Wilf Flynn.
“He was an employee of the council, then a councillor for more than 20 years and became deputy leader of the council.
“His health has been failing him but he has been given the respect to make the decision on when he stood down and has made that in the last week.”
Cllr Flynn was speaking at a meeting of the Hebburn Community Area Forum (CAF), which Cllr Kerr chaired between 1999 – 2001, which was held by videolink and broadcast via YouTube.
Cllr Kerr worked as a local government officer for 26 years, until he retired in 1996 – two years later he returned local government as an elected councillor.
As well as deputy leader of the council, he was also made Mayor of South Tyneside in 2001 and was later a board member at the Customs House theatre, in South Shields.
Hebburn South councillor John McCabe added: “Alan is a highly respected member of the community, a very well known and respected man and I think every member of this CAF wishes him and his family well in the future.”
Council leader Councillor Iain Malcolm, said at the announcement: “Alan worked by my side as my deputy for 10 years to drive the council’s agenda.
“He has been a well-respected Cabinet Member, providing wise counsel on many occasions drawing on his long career as both a Council Officer and long-serving elected member.
“As a ward member, Alan has been a champion for the town of Hebburn and has supported many residents and local causes over the last 22 years."