BOLTON Council spent more than £15,000 on the mayor’s car over the last three years.

The leasing, fuel and maintenance costs of the Jaguar XF Prestige used by the Mayor of Bolton cost the council a total of £15,841.10 in the last three financial years.

A council spokesman said: “The mayor is the civic figurehead of the town and every year the role requires them to carry out hundreds of requested visits and attend events across the borough.

“The position of the mayor promotes and supports local businesses and raises thousands of pounds for local charities.

“In 2016 the council decided to lease a mayoral car as this is a more cost-effective option and, as with all our services, we will continue to look at ways at how we can reduce costs.”

The majority of this was spent on leasing, but some local authorities own their mayoral cars.

Some councils spent money on personalised number plates, but Bolton has owned its “WH1” number plate for many years.

The personalised number plate was given to the town by William Hesketh Lever, Lord Leverhulme.

The figures revealed by the TaxPayer’s Alliance come from a report on luxury mayoral cars.

It found that 207 local authorities spent more than £4.5 million on vehicles for their “first citizen”, a ceremonial role typically held by a councillor for one year.

Not all local authorities pay for a mayoral car, but the average spend of those which do was £21,804 in the last three years.

Two councils in Cheshire use a Bentley Continental Flying Spur while other cars used by councils in the UK include the Audi A8, BMW 7, Jaguar XJ, Mercedes S class and Lexus RX.

The council that spent the most on its mayoral car was the City of Glasgow with £107,661 for three cars.

In the report, the TaxPayer’s Alliance said: “Local authorities should encourage civic leaders to use their own method of transport and sell-off surplus vehicles.”