The Mayor, Councillor June Player

The Charter Trustees of the City of Bath formally elected Councillor June Player to serve the Office of Mayor at their Annual Meeting and Election of Mayor Ceremony on Thursday 6 May 2021.

June became Bath & North East Somerset Council’s first elected Independent Councillor in 2011 representing Westmoreland Ward, and was re-elected in 2015 and 2019.   She served as Deputy Mayor in 2016.

She moved to Bath about 20 years ago, after previously living in London where she was a civil servant in the Social Security Department.  Prior to moving to Bath she lived in Exeter for nearly 30 years working for a while in the civil service.  She then decided to work in and for the community at several charitable organisations as she felt that it far more suited to her character.

She has been a community support co-ordinator, organising and helping with sessions for parents and toddlers, the elderly, frail people and people with learning disabilities and special needs.  She used to drive a double-decker bus that was a mobile community centre to groups of people with no real access to such facilities.  She is interested in amateur dramatics, singing, and gardening, and is an avid campaigner on local community issues.

In 2007 June ‘adopted’ Oldfield Park Station and set up the On-Board Community Project.  She organises numerous community litter picks to help promote community spirit and pride in the community.  In 2009 she received Bath & North East Somerset Council’s Environmental Volunteer of the Year Award.  In 2010 she received a Mayor’s Citizen Award for her community work.  A Community Rail Certificate of Excellence with Outstanding Achievement for Volunteer Contribution followed in 2012, and she was nominated for Environmental Hero of the Year at the Bath Chronicle’s Pride Awards in 2015.

Deputy Mayor, Councillor Dr Yukteshwar Kumar

The Charter Trustees of the City of Bath formally elected Councillor Dr Yukteshwar Kumar to serve the Office of Deputy Mayor at their Annual General Meeting and Election of Mayor Ceremony, held on Thursday 6 May 2021.

Mrs Taniya Deb, his wife, is Deputy Mayoress.

Yukteshwar was the first person to be elected as a Councillor of Bath & North East Somerset from an Indian descent and is the first person of Asian heritage to take the role of the Deputy Mayor of the City of Bath.  

Born in India in 1970, he grew up in a very small village where there was no concrete road or electricity. He has been an extremely hard working and intelligent student and on his merit was selected to study at the best university in India. He was a student leader in India and with support from over 10,000 students was able to pressurise the Indian cabinet to rescind anti-student policies in 1992.

In 1993, at the young age of 23, he became one of the youngest lecturers of the country. He researched and taught in China at several universities and in 2007 moved to Bath to take up the position of Course Director of Chinese Steam at the University of Bath where he is currently serving. In 2019, Yukteshwar was elected to the Bath & North East Somerset Council, representing Bathwick Ward as a Liberal Democrat. He became an Independent in January 2022.

He was voted as the most influential person in Bath in 2020 by The Bath Chronicle. He is a senior academic at the University of Bath and speaks many languages including Chinese, Hindi, Bengali, Urdu, Sanskrit and a little Spanish. He has been the only person from an Indian descent to teach Chinese at any western University. Involved in many charities works, he has established two awards at the University of Bath from his B&NES Council allowance. There is a library and clubs in India in his name where he grew up. He has worked passionately for the community and was one of the founder members of Bath Indian Society. He has organised many community and cultural events in Bath and speaks regularly as a panellist on Indian, Chinese and British TV and radio.

Yukteshwar and Taniya have one son, Yuvraj Kumar, who is also known as Prince.  Prince is a child prodigy and has represented England and the United Kingdom at Junior International Chess Championships. Prince is also a gifted mathematician and has represented our county at national mathematics championships. He is aiming to represent our country at the International Mathematics Olympiad. Taniya has been serving for the council as EYPS (Early Year Professional) for almost a decade now.