The Right Worshipful the Lord Mayor 2013-2014
Councillor Rachel Lyons
The Lord Mayor's Biography
Councillor Rachel Lyons was born and raised in Minchinhampton, Gloucestershire where she attended Stroud High School for Girls.
After leaving school, Councillor Lyons trained as a nurse at both the Winford Orthopaedic Hospital and the Bristol Royal Hospital. After qualifying in 1965, Councillor Lyons worked as a Staff Nurse at the Bristol Royal Infirmary. During this time Councillor Lyons was married to John and received a wedding gift of 6 months of night duty from Matron. Moving onto Winford Hospital she worked first as a staff nurse and then as a night sister. Now living in Winford, her children Stephen and Christine were born and with no nursing posts available after the birth of Christine, Councillor Lyons starting commercial canvassing which was to be of useful experience for when she became a Councillor.
The next period of Councillor Lyons' life was spent in various working roles including that of a home help, nursing agency work, working with The Marie Curie Foundation in locations all over the County of Avon, at various care homes and also spending 4 happy years working in the village post office/general store.
It was during this time, that by working in the Post Office, it meant that Councillor Lyons was at the centre of village life, and broadcast live on Radio Bristol every Tuesday afternoon for 3 years, often while serving customers with a telephone in her hand talking about events taking place in the village and surrounding area, after which her father would call to tell her how many times she had said the word "Um"! Councillor Lyons was also influential in starting a local playgroup, a member of the village hall committee, a school governor and had her first taste of Counselling as a Parish Councillor.
Councillor Lyons became estranged from her husband in 1988 which is when she moved to Exeter after buying Cranleigh House, looking after 5 men with long term mental health problems. Councillor Lyons then met Roy Libby in 1992 who was her partner until his death in 1997.
In 2004 her daughter Christine gained a place at University as a mature student and it was decided that she and her children Charlotte and William would move in with Councillor Lyons who became a mum again while Christine was at University.
As her father was a Parish Councillor it was a natural progression for Councillor Lyons that she firstly become a Parish Councillor in Winford where she held a seat for 15 years and more recently as a City Councillor for Polsloe Ward, a seat which she held from 2000 to 2008 and regained in 2012. Councillors Lyons is very much a community orientated person and was on the steering committee for the formation of the Polsloe Community Association of which she is currently the secretary and treasurer.
Councillor Lyons looks forward to her new position of Lord Mayor for this great city and will maintain the high standard set by her predecessors, a role that she considers a great honour.