THREE former councillors have been honoured for their service to the council.

John Byrne, Norman Critchley, and Guy Harkin have been made Honorary Alderman, a title recognising their commitment to the council.

The title originates from the historic aldermen who were generally unelected local people who sat on the council alongside elected councillors – this was done away with by the Local Government Act 1972.

John Byrne was elected to Breightmet ward in 1992 until 2019 and served as Mayor of Bolton from 2010 to 2011.

He served as executive cabinet member for development and regeneration and executive cabinet member for culture, youth and sport.

Norman Critchley was elected to the council in 1988 and represented Bromley Cross ward until 2019.

He was leader of the Conservative group on the council from 1994 until 1998, and served as Mayor of Bolton in 2009 to 2010, and on various committees.

Guy Harkin was elected to the council in 1980 serving as ward councillor of Daubhill ward until 2004.

He was then elected for Crompton ward for 2009 to 2019 and served as Mayor of Bolton from 2012 to 2013.

He was deputy leader of the council from 1983-2004 and chairman and vice-chairman of Greater Manchester Transport and chairman of North West Employers during this time.

All three were presented with the title by the Mayor of Bolton, councillor Hilary Fairclough, at a full council meeting on August 21.

Councillors also congratulated Vanessa Barlow from Seddon Construction and David Bagley representing the Bolton Family, a group of local businesses and other organisations dedicated to providing social values for the people of the borough.

The Bolton Family and Barkers Consultancy won the Business and Community National Award in the Connected Places category.

The group's Working Wardrobe scheme helps unemployed people and has supported 104 people, getting 52 of them back into work.

The Seddy Bears Picnic event sees the construction business Seddon invest in a local event, and providing 47,500 packed lunches for kids during school holidays.

Barkers, a commercial consultancy, dedicates 50 per cent of profits to social value initiatives.

Dr Wirin Bhatiani, chair of Bolton Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) and Su Long, chief officer at Bolton CCG were congratulated for the CCG being rated ‘Outstanding’ by NHS England, the highest possible accolade and only a handful of CCGs achieve this top ranking.

It also received Green Star ratings, the highest possible grade, for Quality and Leadership and for Patient and Community Engagement.