The mayor of Merton has signalled the end of his year in office by presenting a charity with a new minibus.

Councillor David Williams raised more than £55,000 during his term through fundraising activities for his chosen charity, the Wimbledon Guild.

Events included a race night, Bollywood evening, a Hollywood in Mitcham event, as well as the annual mayor’s ball.

The Wimbledon Guild was presented with the new bus on Tuesday, April 30, with another bus due to be purchased to help the charity with its transport needs.

Coun Williams has attended more than 300 engagements over the year.

He said: “I am the longest serving councillor and I was the deputy mayor 30-odd years ago and leader of the council, but I am still bowled over by the amount of volunteering work done in the borough by people of all ages, including young people.

“It’s quite humbling to be honest.

“I have just come from the Perseid School where the children are severely handicapped children who have been doing their annual play the Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe.

“Frankly one is almost moved to tears sometimes.

“It’s really a wonderful experience.”

On returning to political life he said: “I was elected when I was 22 in 1974, so to have a year out of politics has been very strange.

“I have felt slightly detached, so I am looking forward to rejoining the party political side of life.

“The most important thing going forward are the 2014 elections which we are all gearing up toward now.”

Stepping down as mayor, Coun Williams was praised by Merton Council for his professionalism and skill in chairing council meetings and dedication to his charitable activities.

Councillor Krystal Miller will officially take on the role as first citizen of the borough at a full council meeting on May 15.