A DISTRICT and county councillor is stepping down after 20 years.

Cllr Linda Vijeh, Conservative ward member for Neroche ward and county councillor for Ilminster, announced today (November 15) that she will be leaving the roles from January 1 2022.

The district councillor has said there are a 'number of reasons' for her decision.

"The principle one is that after over 20 years of public service I have decided that the time has come to allow myself the luxury of pursuing other personal interests," she said.

"This will also allow me, as a member of the public, the opportunity to express my views on the issues of the day more openly, without the constraints of formal office.

"My grateful thanks go to those of you who have over the years provided valuable help in supporting me to carry out my duties."

As well as this, Cllr Vijeh will be ending her involvement with local organisations, as she says it has been 'difficult to meet the commitment' needed to be effectively involved.

"However, this does not mean that I will not continue to support those organisations in some way; more that I will do so voluntarily, rather than through obligation," she added.

During her time as county councillor, Cllr Vijeh has campaigned for those in the community. Among many others, she helped to make sure free first aid training was offered in South Somerset in 2014 and presented a cheque for £350 to Winsham Primary School in 2015.