Councillor Diana Ruff, who represents Wingerworth ward, was elected Chair of the Council on Monday 23 May 2022 for the 2022-23 municipal year. Her husband, Geoff, will be her Consort for the year.
The Chair of the Council carries out civic duties and chairs meetings of the Council. The Chair is elected annually by the Council.
Invite the Chair to an event
Councillor Ruff and her Consort, Geoff, have chosen Soldiers, Sailors, Airmen and Families Association (SSAFA) – The Armed Forces Charity as their chosen Charity.
Councillor Ruff said: “Everyone is aware of the excellent work the charity does in providing in supporting the Armed Forces Community in our District. I am looking forward to raising awareness and funds for the charity, which is close to my heart as my father served proudly in the Royal Navy”.
About the Chair
Born in Merton, London the family moved to Edgware when Diana was 4 years old, living there until she married and moved to Wantage, Oxfordshire in 1975. Whilst there, Diana worked for the Oxfordshire Education Authority, and became involved with village life by setting up a Mother & Toddler Group, a Playgroup and Summer Activities Play Scheme.
Diana, and her husband Geoff, moved to Wingerworth 23 years ago to effectively retire and enjoy themselves. However, they both became involved with a new challenge, and that was to help expand the family business, Wingerworth Garden Centre, by establishing and running a Coffee Shop. Through working in the Coffee Shop, Diana met some very interesting people and formed several new and lasting friendships. The late Councillor Sheila Walker invited Diana to attend a Parish Council meeting and the rest as they say, is history. Although not joining the Parish Council straight away it sparked the interest to become more involved with village life.
Diana was co-opted onto the Parish Council in 2008. Spending 12 years on the Parish Council, the last 10 years as Chair.
Working closely with many members of the local community on various projects, one of the greatest successes was building a relationship with the “Friends of the Parks” group, which resulted in three Council-maintained play areas being upgraded, along with the installation of a MUGA and gym equipment on Allendale Park. Diana, working alongside other interested residents, was instrumental in resurrecting the Family Fun Day.
Alongside supporting many established community activities Diana introduced the annual Craft Fair and the Alternative Flower Show.
Diana was elected as a District Councillor for the Ward of Wingerworth in 2019. Taking on the position of Chair of Planning, a role she still holds. She also sits on a range of Committees including Standards, Mental Health Awareness and Organisation Scrutiny. Diana also sits on the Board of Directors for Rykneld Homes and Chesterfield Volunteer Centre.
Diana has always been community minded, and hopes to carry on working with local community groups for some time to come.
Diana enjoys spending her spare time with family and friends, reading (mainly Crime Fiction), gardening and watercolour painting.