Oxford's first Green lord mayor to get on her bike

Oxford's first lord mayor from the Green Party has pledged to get on her bike to carry out her civic duties.

Councillor Elise Benjamin was sworn in as the Labour-controlled city council's 51st lord mayor at a ceremony on Thursday.

But she has moved away from tradition of using the official plush mayoral car and opted for a more environmentally-friendly approach.

She will instead use the official mayoral bicycle to attend functions.

The lord mayor's bicycle was donated to the council by cycling campaign group Cyclox a number of years ago.

'Different approach'

Ms Benjamin said it was an "honour" to be mayor, especially in a city which is steeped in history.

"I have decided to use the mayoral bike as I'm a cyclist anyway," she said.

"It's something I'm very passionate about."

Ms Benjamin, who has served as a councillor in East Oxford since 1999, takes over as lord mayor from Liberal Democrat Councillor John Goddard.

The Green Party has five seats on the council.

"I think it's going to be a great fun, very, very enjoyable but it will take up a lot of time," she added.

"I think this is a time to show that perhaps we have a slightly different approach, a more down-to-earth approach and obviously, as a Green, it's something I've very passionate about".

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