Avril Coulton has been sworn in as the 726th Mayor of Christchurch.

The ceremony took place at a meeting of the town council.

Cllr Coulton said: "It really is a terrific privilege and honour to take up a role that dates back to 1297.

"It is wonderful that we celebrate that heritage and traditional in the heart of our ancient borough."

She joined the newly-formed town council in 2019 and has been one of its most active members, taking up a variety of causes and issues and also volunteers at the Macmillan Caring Locally unit.

This will be her nominated charity for the year.

In a varied career she has worked for Midland Bank and National Air Traffic Services at Heathrow, Swanwick and Hurn and set up her own successful school uniform business.

Cllr Coulton, who is also a magistrate, succeeds Cllr Sue Bungey.