Cllr Heywood has represented the Dulverton and District ward for the past five years and takes on the chairmanship from Cllr Stuart Dowding who has been in post for the past two years.
Born in Withypool while his family was farming Cloutsham on the Holnicote Estate, Cllr Heywood was raised in Porlock Vale. He spent four years at school in Minehead, going on to senior school and agricultural college before farming in North Devon and East Yorkshire. He and his family returned to the Exmoor area, buying a livestock farm near Dulverton.
He returned to his roots as generations of his family have farmed in the Barle Valley. He has written a biography of his father, entitled A Singular Exmoor Man, and enjoys oils and watercolour painting - when time allows.
He hunted regularly with foxhounds and the Devon and Somerset Staghounds and owned and trained a number of point-to-point horses and won the prestigious Grimthorpe Gold Cup twice in succession.
He said: “I am looking forward to the challenges ahead – I am a link in the chain, carrying the flame during my year in office.”
The chain of office was officially handed over by Cllr Dowding at West Somerset Council’s annual meeting on Wednesday May 11. Cllr Rosemary Woods was elected as vice chairman of the authority.
Photo: Cllr Dowding (left) is shown handing the chain of office to Cllr Heywood.
Debbie Rundle, on behalf of West Somerset Council,01984 635280 or 01823 356407 email firstname.lastname@example.org