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Derbyshire councils have spent more than £56,000 on cars for their mayors or leadership during the cost of living crisis

Derbyshire councils have spent more than £56,000 on cars for their mayors or leadership, often chauffeured by authority employees, during the cost of living crisis.

At a time when residents and businesses are considering every penny spent Derbyshire councils have spent a combined £56,364 over the past calendar year from March 2022 to March 2023 on vehicles for their appointed leaders.

Erewash Borough Council and Chesterfield Borough Council are the major spenders of that money, accounting for £37,660.99 of the overall sum in the past year, with the rest being spent by Derbyshire County Council, Derby City Council, High Peak Borough Council and North East Derbyshire District Council.

Most of the chosen vehicles are electric vehicles, though these differ in prestige with Chesterfield hiring a Citroen E-C4, valued at around £30,000, while Erewash has leased a luxury vehicle – a BMW 745Le, valued at around £80,000.

This year, at the same time as this expenditure, Erewash is considering closing 10 public toilets and reducing museum opening hours; and Chesterfield is scrapping the automatic public toilets at the coach station.

Meanwhile, Amber Valley Borough Council, Bolsover District Council, Derbyshire Dales District Council and South Derbyshire District Council have not spent anything on civic transport in the past year.

Councils are financially constrained due to the limited ways in which they can raise funds – primarily through tax, car parking and charges for services – and the mass reduction in grants from central Government, making millions of pounds in cutbacks over the past few years to reach legally-required balanced budgets.

This has led to councils cutting back on staff and outsourcing services such as bin collections and leisure centres to private companies and charities.

The civic vehicle spending figures, obtained by the Local Democracy Reporting Service through Freedom of Information requests, are detailed in full below.

Amber Valley

The council has not spent anything on civic transport in the past 12 months (March 2022 to March 2023).


The council says it no longer provides a civic car and chauffeuring function because its members now use public transport or their own private vehicle and claim mileage allowances.


The borough council says it does not provide vehicles for staff or elected members, but does have a civic vehicle on long-term hire, and authority employees who carry out the chauffeuring duties.

The overall cost of this over the past year was £17,960.

A Citroen E-C4 on a long lease, negotiated as part of a wider fleet contract for the council, is the civic vehicle.

A spokesperson for Chesterfield Borough Council said: “The role of the mayor brings many benefits to Chesterfield borough, both in terms of work in the community and charitable donations raised through the annual mayor’s appeal.

“In a typical calendar year, the mayor and mayoress attend hundreds of engagement events supporting local businesses, charities, voluntary organisations, and schools – supporting the work and profile of these organisations, and often supporting their individual fundraising efforts.

“The costs provided for civic transport includes the vehicle lease but also incorporates the cost of tax, insurance, fuel, and any associated staffing costs.”


The city council spent £3,791.76 to lease a chauffeured vehicle for the Mayor, at a monthly rate of £315.98.

This car is leased over 36 months as a hire agreement between the council and Kinto One, on behalf of Toyota.

The vehicle leased by the council is a Toyota Camry Saloon 2.5 VVT-i hybrid Excel 4dr CVT.

It is used by the Mayor of Derby and their consort for transportation to civic engagements and is not routinely used by city council staff.

The council spent a further £21,849.48 in the past year hiring vehicles for its staff for their front-line duties – but these are not chauffeured civic vehicles.


The county council provides the chauffeuring service for the authority by using electric vehicles it has purchased.

It says there is no additional cost for this but members’ services are charged for the staff time.

The council says this is an interdepartmental transfer of £2,803.07 over the past calendar year.

It did not detail the type of vehicle but on a visit to County Hall in Matlock a 19/20 reg county council-branded Nissan Leaf was charging close to the main entrance off the car park.

Derbyshire Dales

The council does not provide civic transportation for the use of councillors or staff.


The authority used Cruise in Control of Nottingham up until October and then from October used Pinnacle Chauffeuring Transport Ltd at a combined cost of £19,700.99.

It has hired a BMW 745Le plug-in hybrid as its civic vehicle.

A tender contract – seen by the LDRS – agreed between the council and Pinnacle Executive Cars Limited, starting from November 1, lasts for three years, until October 31, 2025 and is valued at £64,000.

Danielle Hughes, head of law and corporate governance at Erewash Borough Council, said: “The Mayor and Deputy Mayor of Erewash attended more than 180 community engagements during the civic year.

“During his term in office the Mayor supported and promoted the work of the Royal British Legion, Help for Heroes and local armed forces cadet units, including the 2195 Air Cadets and the Long Eaton Army Cadets.

“A number of these events were to promote the vital work of charities in the borough including the Arena Church in Ilkeston and The Canaan Trust homeless charity in Long Eaton.

“The Mayor also visited a resident who marked his 108th birthday.

“The Mayor does drive himself to some events so having a chauffeur is the exception and we do seek to get best value with this as with everything else.”

High Peak

The council employs a member of staff to perform duties as the Mayor’s chauffeur and attendant.  The costs of this service have totalled £10,012 for 2022/23.  The council uses a hybrid Toyota Prius for this purpose.

North East Derbyshire

The district council says it hires Eco Executive Travel Ltd and Cannons Travel for its civic vehicles, costing £2,096.25 over the past year, and is unable to detail which vehicles it hired.

South Derbyshire

The council has not spent anything on civic transport in the past 12 months (March 2022 to March 2023).

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