Manchester City Council

A Celebration of the life and work of Councillor Shelia Newman

A public celebration of the life and work of Councillor Sheila Newman is to be held on Sunday 13 May.

The celebration - which is open to all - is to be held at Manchester Cathedral at 1pm and will begin with a welcome by the Very Reverend Rogers Govender, Dean of Manchester.

Tributes will be paid by Sheila’s husband the Lord Mayor of Manchester Councillor Eddy Newman, friends, and colleagues.

The service will include readings by Sheila’s daughters, the civic prayer and a selection of her favourite songs.

Cllr Newman passed away in February 2018, aged 62. She was born in Galashiels in the Scottish Borders and attended Aberdeen University before moving to Manchester in 1978 to train as a teacher.

She worked as a teacher, served as a councillor in Hulme for five years in the 1980s (being first elected in 1982) and represented the Chorlton ward on the Council from 1999 onwards.

Cllr Newman was Manchester City Council’s Executive Member for Children’s Services, a position she was holding for the second time and held for eight years in total.

She also took on the role of Lady Mayoress of Manchester in November 2017, serving alongside her husband Cllr Eddy Newman, Lord Mayor of Manchester.

Cllr Eddy Newman, Lord Mayor of Manchester, said: “Sheila was my life partner for 35 years and mother to our three wonderful daughters. I am grateful to the City Council and to Manchester Cathedral for enabling this nice tribute to Sheila. This gives family and friends a chance to talk about Sheila’s life and for her colleagues to recognise her immense work for the people of Manchester, particularly Manchester’s children and young people and her constituents in Chorlton.”

Councillor Sue Murphy who will pay tribute to Sheila’s contribution to Manchester, at the service said: “This service gives us a welcome chance to reflect and celebrate Sheila’s life and achievements. She served Manchester with dedication for more than thirty years and she is very much missed as a friend and colleague. Sheila was a committed champion of the areas she represented, most notably her home ward of Chorlton where she was elected in 1999. She served as a school governor for more than 30 years and cared deeply about young people in Manchester, and as a councillor was able to oversee significant improvements to safeguarding services recognised by Ofsted.”

Sheila had a lifelong love of reading and was determined to help children and young people in Manchester get the best start in life. She was a supporter of Book Trust - Britain’s largest Children’s reading charity - which inspires a love of reading, particularly helping  children and families who need extra support. Book Trust would welcome donations in Sheila’s name and can be made online at:

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