The Right Worshipful the Mayor of St Albans City and District, Councillor Frances Leonard

Mayor2016-17Councillor Frances Leonard was made the 473rd Mayor of St Albans City and District at the Annual Council meeting on 25 May 2016. Her husband, Dr Graham Leonard, will be her Consort for the year. 

They have lived in St. Albans since 1974, with Frances serving as a Sandridge Parish Councillor for five years before being elected as District Councillor for Sandridge Ward in 2007. 

Frances was born in 1951 in Leamington Spa, Warwickshire and lived in the village of Harbury with her parents and brother and sister.  She was educated at the local village school until passing her 11 plus and moving on to grammar school, Leamington College for Girls.
Her mother was a cleaning lady who later became a village postwoman; her father worked for a local company quarrying limestone for the cement industry. 

Frances was the first member of her family to take ‘O’ levels and went on to take ‘A’ levels and gain a place at the School of Pharmacy, University of London.  Frances is eternally grateful to her late parents for encouraging her to continue with education at a time when being able to afford to stay on at school, let alone attend university, was not a foregone conclusion. 

At university Frances met her husband Graham, although he was a number of years ahead of her!  After graduation Frances undertook her pre-registration year at Boots the Chemist in Barnet.  On completing this qualifying year and becoming a registered pharmacist, she did managerial relief work in North London for Boots and was based at their branch in Camden High Street.  During this time, she shared a flat in Tufnell Park with friends from university and school. 

Within a few months of marrying, Frances and Graham moved to their first home, a maisonette on The Ridgeway, Marshalswick.  Frances took up a position at Boots in Welwyn Garden City where Graham also worked for Smith Kline and French. 

From Boots, Frances went to work as a pharmacist at Harperbury Hospital and then on to Hemel Hempstead General Hospital where she only worked for a matter of months as by then her first baby, daughter Sally, was on the way.
When her children, Sally and Tom, were small Frances worked as a Locum Pharmacist around the St. Albans area and one of the places she locumed was the newly opened BUPA Hospital in Harpenden.  After a number of years Frances became manager of the pharmacy department at what is now Spire Harpenden Hospital.

A busy home and work life hasn’t left a lot of time for other activities, but Frances has been a bell ringer at St. Albans Abbey. She was also a committee member of the local branch of the Royal Pharmaceutical Society for 25 years where, thanks to many supportive consultants from her hospital, helped to put on educational lectures for local pharmacists on a monthly basis. Frances has supported the Stroke Association several times by undertaking sponsored bike rides in London and also breast cancer charities by sponsored runs in Hyde Park.

Frances enjoys taking part in environmental projects in her ward and helps to organize the annual Rose Walk Big Lunch street party.  She also enjoys days out with friends and has visited many interesting places, both at home and abroad.  One of her more enjoyable activities is spending time with her family, including her two delightful granddaughters.

Date of last review: 26 May 2016