Sunderland councillor Phil Tyne chosen as new chairman of Tyne and Wear Fire and Rescue Authority

A Sunderland councillor has been appointed as new chair of Tyne and Wear Fire and Rescue Authority at the second time of asking.

By Nic Marko
Friday, 8th July 2022, 4:35 pm

It came after a decision on the appointment of a new chair was initially not able to be reached at the annual general meeting (AGM) on June 27.

On that occasion, Cllr Tye and fellow Labour councillor Gary Haley, who represents Gateshead Council, received seven votes each to take the position, and could not be separated after three polls to elect a chair.

(L to R) Chair Cllr Phil Tye, CFO Chris Lowther and Vice-Chair Cllr Carole Burdis.

However this time Cllr Tye was voted in with no dissent from those at the meeting.

He said: “It is an exciting time to be part of the fire and rescue service and I am delighted to have been appointed chair of the fire authority.

“Tyne and Wear Fire and Rescue Service is a great organisation that has a fantastic reputation at both a local and national level.

“I share their vision of creating the safest communities here in Tyne and Wear and look forward to the future.”

Friday’s meeting was opened by Cllr Carole Burdis, who represents the Valley ward at North Tyneside Council, after she was appointed as the authority’s vice-chairperson at the AGM.

Tyne and Wear Chief Fire Officer Chris Lowther extended a “warm welcome” to Cllr Tye and all the new authority members.

He said: “It is an exciting time to be a part of the service as we are investing in new ways of working, new technology and people.

“There are also a number of challenges ahead of us but I look forward to working closely with Cllr Tye and the new members of the authority.

“I hope that together we can continue to achieve our strategic goals and continue to create the safest communities across Tyne and Wear.”

Previously the chair since June 2019 had been Sunderland City Council representative Tony Taylor.

Mr Taylor was elected to the local authority for Labour in 2014 and served Washington East, but it was confirmed prior to May’s local elections he would be standing down and not seek re-election.

The fire authority is responsible for overseeing the work of the Tyne and Wear Fire and Rescue Service and is made up of 17 members:

:: Four each from Sunderland City Council and Newcastle City Council

:: Three each from Gateshead Borough Council and North Tyneside Council

:: Two from South Tyneside Council

:: The Police and Crime Commissioner for Northumbria.