A born and bred Maidonian who represented the nation as a rower and now leads the next generation of young hopefuls at Maidenhead Rowing Club has been welcomed as the 45th Mayor of the Royal Borough.
Cllr Paul Lion was elected as Mayor for 2018/19 during the annual mayor-making ceremony, which took place at the Town Hall, Maidenhead, on Tuesday 22 May. He will be supported throughout the year by his wife Mrs Laura Lion, the Mayoress.
Paul was born in Grenfell Road, Maidenhead and attended Boyn Hill Infants, Wimbury and Furze Platt Juniors and Gordon Road Secondary School.
He was introduced to rowing by his father John, and aged nine learnt to cox at Maidenhead Rowing Club, where he is now President.
The new Mayor raced up to the age of 30 and his greatest achievements on the water were winning gold for England in the junior single sculls at the Silver Jubilee Regatta and Serpentine Home Counties in 1977, winning gold in the National Championships and representing Great Britain in the junior single sculls at the World Rowing Junior Championships in Belgrade. In 1983 he won gold again for Maidenhead Rowing Club in quadruple sculls at the National Championships.
Paul and Laura have two children – Benjamin, a commercial pilot and Katy who works in international business.
The new Mayor, Cllr Lion, said: “I feel it is a huge honour to be able to represent the Royal Borough as First Citizen, along with my wife Laura. We met at Maidenhead Leisure Centre when we were 16 and have worked together in sport and business for over 40 years. We are looking forward to being part of the rejuvenation projects in Maidenhead and have a fantastic opportunity to represent Windsor and the surrounding areas.”
The Mayor and Mayoress look forward to supporting Royal Borough residents, businesses and charities including the Mayor’s chosen charities for the year, the Royal British Legion and the Royal National Life Boat Institution.
The Deputy Mayor will be Cllr Colin Rayner, who was first elected to serve the residents of Horton and Wraysbury at a by-election in June 2005. He has been lead member for highways for four years, Mayor in 2012/13 and Deputy Mayor in 2011/12.
His wife Cllr Samantha Rayner will be Deputy Mayoress. She has been a borough councillor for Eton Wick since 2015 and is currently the council’s lead member for culture and communities.
Outgoing Mayor, Cllr John Lenton raised over £13,000 for his chosen charities, Alexander Devine Children’s Hospice, Berkshire Community Foundation and Thames Hospice (they received £4,355 each). He and his wife Margaret Lenton, the Mayoress attended hundreds of events on behalf of the council