Barnstaple’s town clerk Will Austin is to move on after four years.

Mr Austin will leave the town council at the end of June or in early July for a new role in Dorset.

He said: “Barnstaple really has felt like home for the last four years, but I have very close personal and family connections in Dorset.

“I’ll be sorry to leave and hope that I have helped make a difference during my time here.”

Barnstaple mayor Julie Hunt said the search for a new town clerk had already begun.

She added: “I and town councillors are very grateful to Will for his work in Barnstaple – he has helped us deliver some really important changes, and has raised the profile of the council significantly during his time here.

“The job of town clerk to the largest town council in Devon, in a wonderful area to live, will I hope be a big draw to potential candidates.”

As well as helping the town council take on the maintenance of roadside verges, during his time there Will has overseen some other significant changes, and agrees that the role is an exciting one.

He said: “I’m pleased that we’ve developed some excellent partnership working locally, including the one that saved the Record Office from closure.

“The town council has also become a stronger campaigning voice for the local community than it was, and we’ve begun an exciting project to refurbish the wonderful Barnstaple Guildhall.

“It’s a great job in the capital of North Devon and I’m certain it will attract some strong candidates.”