Video: Linda and Kim to lead new Mid Ulster council

Mid Ulster Council has elected Sinn Fein’s Linda Dillon as the Chairperson for the historic first year of the council, with DUP councillor Kim Ashton taking the Deputy Chairperson role.

Speaking after their election on Thursday night, both women pledged to work for all the residents in the council region which merges Magherafelt, Cookstown and Magherafelt.

“This is history in the making and I’m delighted to be part of that,” Cllr Dillon said, “I’m excited about it and I think it will be a brilliant opportunity.

Councillor Ashton said that despite the recent headlines surrounding the ban on the sale of poppies and the Irish first branding of the council, she and her party would work with the other political parties to ensure good community relations are maintained.

She also said the council faced significant financial challenges, as the cuts at Stormont filtered down to council level.

“We need to work hard to protect the people of Mid Ulster from the growing financial pressures, which will result from these cuts,” she said.

Mid Ulster's transitional chair Cathal Mallaghan will hand over to party colleague Linda Dillon

Mid Ulster's transitional chair Cathal Mallaghan will hand over to party colleague Linda Dillon

This is history in the making and I’m delighted to be part of that - Cllr. Dillon