LUNCH with the Queen and an invite to a special memorial service for Nelson Mandela are just some of the highlights of the outgoing Mayor of Bolton, as he prepares to hand over his chains.

Cllr Colin Shaw is set to stand down at the end of the month, as Tonge with The Haulgh councillor Martin Donaghy prepares to take his place as Bolton’s first citizen.

During his time Cllr Shaw and his mayoress and wife Dee have attended hundreds of functions, school visits, plays and events, as well as chairing each of the full council meetings.

He has also raised thousands of pounds for this chosen charities — Bolton Hospice, Bolton Lads and Girls Club, Bolton Society for Blind People and Fortalice.

Cllr Shaw said it was a privilege to have served as Mayor of Bolton.

He said: “Everybody has been so kind to me during my time as mayor. Meeting the Queen and having lunch with her when she visited Gorton Monastery last year was a definite highlight, and when we were invited to attend the Nelson Mandela memorial service in Westminster Abbey.

“Really, the highlights of my year have been the children of the town. They have been wonderful.”

A Tory councillor for 20 years, Cllr Shaw is up for re-election in Heaton and Lostock this month, however, he cannot carry out any canvassing while he is still mayor.

Cllr Donaghy will be installed as the next Mayor of Bolton at an official mayor making ceremony at the Town Hall on Wednesday, May 28.