History was made when Labour’s Joanne Anderson was declared Liverpool’s new city mayor on Saturday. She will work alongside government-appointed commissioners, following a damning report about council practices.
Signing the oath of office to begin her tenure, she said she was “relatively relaxed” about the role.
The authority has been under scrutiny since police began investigating building and development contracts.
Ms Anderson was selected as Labour candidate after previous mayor Joe Anderson; who is no relation to Joanne stood aside, following his arrest.
He has denied all wrongdoing and no-one has been charged as part of the investigation.
An inspection of the council then found what Communities Secretary Robert Jenrick called a “serious breakdown of governance” and “multiple apparent failures” in some functions at the Labour-run authority.
In being elected, she has also become the city’s first female mayor, and she said she was surprised she was not more nervous about taking the role on.
“I’m relatively relaxed, which I’m quite surprised by, but it’s a job, isn’t it? It’s work and I’m hard-working, so I’m not frightened by that,” she said.
Ms Anderson, who has been a councillor since 2019, said she had “a different slant on things”; adding that while she had “always been political… I’m not your traditional politician”.
She said she was a consultant by trade “so I’m used to fixing organisational problems [and] used to engaging people, getting them on board and… engaging with communities to translate into policy”.
“I’m governed by my values [and] I can promise you a fresh start, as I’m not entrenched the cultural way of doing things,” she added.
“Liverpool has always been a city of firsts – one that does things differently and that charters its own path. Today we made history. Today is the beginning of the fresh start we all want and need,” Anderson said.