Wyre Forest District Council is ahead of the game when it comes to gender equality.

For the first time ever there are broadly equal numbers of female and male councillors, putting the council well above the national average.

At all-out elections in May Wyre Forest District Council 16 female councillors and 17 male councillors were elected compared with 12 female and 21 male in 2017/18.

The council’s official percentage of female to male is now 48%, well above the national average of 35%. It is among only 35 councils with 45% or more women councillors. 60% of Wyre Forest’s Cabinet are women.

Wyre Forest District Council also has its first Chairman and Vice Chairman from minority ethnic backgrounds, Councillor Shazu Miah and Councillor Peter Young.

Council Leader Councillor Graham Ballinger said: “This represents a real step change in Wyre Forest and is testament to the hard work of all political parties in the district to bring about greater equality and diversity. I am pleased that is reflected in the make-up of the Cabinet that I lead.

“Having 33 councillors means there will never be exactly the same number of men and women, so in broad terms we have reached gender balance. There is still more work to be done to make the council even more representative of the local population,  but we’re well on the way and ahead of many councils in the country.”

The average figure of 35% female councillors in England is based on data provided by the Fawcett Society: