The Mayor 

The Mayor must be an elected member of the Council.  He or she is elected into office at the Annual Meeting of the Council in May and his or her year of office runs to May of the following year.  


The Mayor and Mayoress wear their chains of office when they attend functions on behalf of the Council.


Cllr Rowlands (Mayor pic)


Cllr Leighton Rowlands

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Cllr Rowlands was born and raised in Barry. He attended Holton Road Primary School and Barry Comprehensive School where he studied History, Politics and Information Technology. After leaving Barry Sixth he went on to read History at the University Swansea, specialising in medieval history.


After graduating Leighton worked at Cardiff International Airport as a customer service adviser. He then moved on to work in the private sector, in particular in the Waste Industry where he worked as Quality Control officer. Following time as a Quality Control Officer, Leighton worked as a Corporate Account Researcher spending another three years at the company before making a decision to stand for election.


Leighton has always has a sense of duty and commitment to the community he has lived in all his life. He was honoured that the residents of Dyfan Ward put their faith in him to serve as their Councillor on the Vale of Glamorgan Council and Barry Town Council.


Leighton is the youngest Mayor in the Vale of Glamorgan Council's history at only 28. His passions are tennis, running, and TV series and History documentaries, along with politics of course.  


Cllr Rowlands has transformed the way the Mayor of the Vale of Glamorgan operates. His first actions after being named as Mayor-elect were to scale back the hospitality functions of the Mayor's office and to set up a Mayor’s Foundation.

“I want to ensure the Mayor is value for money for the residents of the Vale of Glamorgan. With budgets reducing within the Council it was only right for me to look at my own within the Mayor's office and see what could be cut."

The new Mayor's Foundation supports organisations and charities by providing grant funding to assist with projects that help deliver the Council's vision of Strong Communities with a Bright Future.


"I would like to invite you to join me in rallying round in supporting of our communities, and the many frontline groups that are delivering practical solutions for our Community. One way you can do this is by donating to the Mayor’s Foundation that will be dedicated to looking at funding local Charities and Groups within the Vale of Glamorgan.


Anyone can donate to The Mayor’s Foundation, and the money raised is awarded as grants to charities and local organisations for projects to help deliver Strong Communities with a Bright Future. The Foundation is aimed at making a significant difference to the every-day lives of people in Vale of Glamorgan and a Brighter and Stronger Community." 






  • Is there a difference between a Mayor and a Lord Mayor?
    Cities have a Lord Mayor; Councils like the Vale of Glamorgan have a Mayor.
  • What is the difference between a Mayoress and a Consort?

    The Mayor and Deputy Mayor appoint their companions. Either a spouse, partner, son, daughter or friend is chosen. If the companions are wives they are referred to as the Mayoress or Deputy Mayoress.


    If husband, brother or sister is chosen they are called Consort or Deputy Consort.

  • Is the Mayor's car theirs to keep?  
    No. One car is used by the Mayor and the Deputy Mayor. The Mayor doesn’t drive the car himself but is driven by a chauffeur. The civic car can also be used by the Leader of the Council and the Chief Executive.
  • How busy is the Mayor?
    The Mayor’s workload can vary from year to year depending on what’s taking place in the Vale of Glamorgan during the Mayor’s term. In recent years Mayors have regularly undertaken in excess of 550 engagements a year. “Engagements” include meetings, chairing full council, charity committee meetings, charity events, exhibition openings etc
  • How is a Mayor chosen? 
    A Mayor is always a member of the council, usually with long service, who is invited to stand by colleagues from their political party, and has usually been Deputy Mayor the previous year.

    The vote for a new Mayor is taken at the Annual General Meeting of Council, which is traditionally held in May.


    When there is a clear majority in the Council the candidate can expect to be elected unopposed. However, if there is a hung Council there can be more than one candidate for the posts of Mayor and Deputy Mayor and the election result can be very close.

  • Can a Mayor be in office more than once?
    Yes, although they cannot hold the title 'Mayor' for more than one year in office. 
  • Does the Mayor run the council?

    The Mayor of the Vale of Glamorgan Council is a non-political and non-executive role. The Vale of Glamorgan Council is headed by the Leader of the Council and their Cabinet, with scrutiny committees monitoring Cabinet decisions closely.

    The Mayor chairs Council meetings and ensures that each agenda item is debated fairly.

    At full council it is unusual for the Mayor to speak on an issue as they need to be impartial. However if necessary they hold the casting vote on issues.

  • Does the Mayor earn a lot of money?
    All councillors receive a basic allowance, but the Mayor receives an additional special allowance set by Council to enable the Mayor/Deputy Mayor to carry out their additional duties.
  • When does the Mayor wear the chain of office? 
    The Mayor always wears the chain of office when on official business, unless specifically requested not to. 

    The Deputy Mayor wears her chain when representing the Mayor.