ONE of the Cotswolds’ most prominent councillors has resigned from the district council to concentrate on her bid to become a euro-MP.

Coun Julie Girling is the former leader of Cotswold District Council (CDC), on which she has represented Campden-Vale ward since being elected to the authority in May 1999.

She has been included on the Conservative Party’s list of candidates for the South West Region at the European Parliament elections on Thursday, June 4.

Coun Girling resigned with immediate effect so a by-election, to find her successor as Campden-Vale ward member, could be held with the other council elections on June 4.

This will avoid the additional expense of arranging a separate by-election weeks later.

Coun Girling has served on all CDC’s committees.

She was CDC’s leader from May 2003 until May 2006, during which time she led the council in adopting cabinet governance and achieving a ‘Good’ rating in its Comprehensive Performance Assessment.

Coun Girling oversaw completion of CDC’s construction of Bourton Leisure Centre and Cotswold Leisure Centre at Cirencester, as well as the refurbishment of Cirencester’s Corinium Museum.

She represented CDC on many national, regional and local organisations.

Coun Girling remains on Gloucestershire County Council, on which she represents the North Cotswold Division.

She is also the county council’s lead cabinet member for environment and community.

CDC leader, Coun Lynden Stowe, said: "Julie Girling's appointment as leader, in May 2003, was a watershed moment for CDC.

“Her inspirational leadership, in keeping council tax increases down, is a fantastic legacy for council taxpayers in the Cotswolds.

"I'm sure that all councillors will put politics aside and wish Julie well in the European elections - it will be great if we can get a local woman into Brussels.

“I'm sure her heart will always be in the Cotswolds."