A COUNCIL boss is stepping down from his role, claiming he no longer has the full confidence of his party.

Conservative councillor Keith Knaggs has led Ryedale District Council for the last 17 years but said his resignation was now in the best interests of the district.

“In recent weeks it has become clear that I no longer possess the full confidence of the Conservative group on Ryedale District Council,” he said.

‘This means that I would not be able to take the group and the council through the radical transformation necessary if it is to remain a relevant and successful local authority. That situation would not be in the best interests of the people of Ryedale.”

His successor as leader of the Tory group and, from January, as leader of the council is Linda Cowling, who has been a member of the authority for 22 years.