Mayor of Torfaen

The role of the Mayor

The roles of mayor and deputy mayor were removed from the council in May 2018 as part of the 2018/19 budget.

As a result, the council has amended its constitution and approved the creation of a Presiding Member and Deputy Presiding Member to chair council meetings.

From May 2018, the roles and functions normally undertaken by a mayor will be undertaken by the leader of the council and cabinet members.

If you would like the Leader of the Council or an Executive Member to attend an event / function then please put your request in writing six weeks before the date of your event to

Written confirmation will be provided to you if they are able to attend.

Chains of Office

The role of mayor has a special place in the history of the borough and the mayoral chains will remain the property of the council.

The chains were presented to the Mayor and Mayoress of Torfaen, Councillor and Mrs D B Richards, by Mr G R Packer, Managing Director of Girling Limited. 

Councillor Richards was an employee of Girling Limited with over thirty-two years service. Since 1948 he was Branch Secretary of the A.E.W.U at Cwmbran, and a Union Convenor between 1946 and his retirement in November 1974. 

He received the British Empire Medal in the New Year's Honours List of 1953. 

He was elected to the former Cwmbran Urban District Council in 1956-1974. During this time he had the honour of being its Chairman twice until, under Local Government re-organisation, Cwmbran Urban District Council was amalgamated with the former Pontypool and Blaenavon Councils to form the "Borough of Torfaen" in April 1974. 

The Mayor's chain is 18ct Hall Marked Gold with thirty four links approximately 5' 0" in length. 

The Mayoress' chain is 18ct Hall Marked Gold approximately 3' 6" in length. 

The main 'design' concept is based upon the Borough Coat of Arms incorporated into a pendant and chain composed of local Welsh materials, e.g. Panteg Stainless Steel and Gwent Coal. 

The pendant is made principally of reconstituted Welsh Coal backed and embellished with 18/8 Stainless Steel. It incorporated the Borough insignia and motto and is detachable from the chain for informal occasions when it can be worn on a ribbon. 

The main 'chain' is composed of Stainless Steel links and decorative panels, two of which display the "sun" motive of the old Torfaen Coat of Arms and the monogram 'TCB'. At the back of the chain is a large fastener link and this depicts the Welsh Dragon in red and gold. 

The metalwork on both chains was manufactured by the B.S.C Panteg Works apprentices.

The reconstituted coal technique is of special interest and has been developed within B.S.C. It involves the use of a very black coal - not anthracite - which is pulverised and dried. This is then mixed with epoxy or phenolic resins and is cast to the desired shape. It is possible to polish or machine this material, and to add fibre-glass to it for increased strength and rigidity. 

The project was designed and supervised by Harold Christie, B.S.C. Design and Presentation Officer, Welsh Division on behalf of Sheffield Division B.S.C.

Coat of Arms

The official Coat of Arms was adopted by Torfaen Borough Council on May 29th 1975.

General Symbolism:

Blue wavy lines represent the Afon Lwyd (Welsh for Grey River) which runs the length of Gwent's Eastern Valley; rising sun depicts new authority and its terrain; black diamonds depict coal; wheat sheaves represent the Borough's agriculture; the crow derives from Cwmbran (Welsh for Valley of the Crow (or black bird)), being the traditional emblem of the town; vases carried by crows depict Pontypool Japanware, one of the area's most famous industries of the past.

Heraldic Description:

The Arms are Quarterly Or and Gules overall a Fess Argent charged with two Barrulets wavy Azure first and fourth Quarter a Lozenge Sable charged with a Garb Or second and third Quarters a Crow wings addorsed proper holding in its dexter claw a Japanned vase Or the Crest on a Wreath Or and Azure issuant from a circlet of Garbs Or and Lozenges Sable rising behind a range of hills proper a Sun in splendour Or.

Last Modified: 05/12/2018
For more information contact:

Democratic Services


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