THE deputy leader of Hyndburn Council has announced that he is stepping down from the role.
Councillor Jim Dickinson will remain a Baxenden councillor but will also give up his position as a Cabinet member.
Councillor Dickinson, who started his political career 16 years ago, said that the time had come to step back and he was looking forward to having more leisure time.
He added: "I've thought about this for some time and I've decided that I'd like to step down and give someone else a shot.
"At 66 I'm no spring chicken and the role of deputy leader can be very demanding at times. I feel that I've performed the role positively over the years and I'm in the fortunate position of being able to leave on a high note following the excellent Conserv-ative result at the local election.
"I have done about 16 years and I just felt that the time was right to step down. I will miss the comradeship of my colleagues on the Cabinet but I am looking forward to spending more time at my allotment."
Leader of the council, Peter Britcliffe, said: "I will be very sorry to lose Jim as my deputy but I know that he will continue to serve his Baxenden constituents from the backbenches.
"Jim has been a superb deputy leader and is known affectionately throughout the council as Gentleman Jim on account of his erudite speeches and the integrity with which he always conducts himself.
"It's not going to be easy to fill Jim's shoes but the Conservative group will be making nominations and selecting a deputy leader over the next two weeks."