Cllr Patrick Cunningham was appointed as the 821st Mayor of Winchester at a Mayor Making Ceremony on Wednesday 20th May 2020. It was a historic first for Winchester's ancient Mayoralty with the Ceremony being held "Virtually" owing to the Covid19 lockdown and social distancing needs.
Cllr Cunningham was elected to the City Council in May 2018. He has served on Littleton and Harestock Parish Council since 2015 and was elected Chairman in 2016 serving in that role until January 2020. He continues as a councillor on the Parish Council.
Cllr Cunningham has served as a Member on a wide range of City Council committees since 2018 including Overview & Scrutiny, Standards, Planning, Kings Barton Forum (Deputy Chair), Cabinet (Station Approach), and as a deputy Member on Audit.
Born in Dublin, he was educated at St. Michael’s Prep’ school and St. Vincent’s Castleknock College in Dublin where in 1964 he was a member of the Leinster Schools Junior Cup winning rugby team at Lansdown Road. Cllr Cunningham went on to Shannon College of Hotel Management, during which time he spent 1½ years in Geneva Switzerland. Upon graduation in 1976, he joined Trusthouse Forte Hotels working in various 0perational and Functional roles in London. Cllr Cunningham took up his first General Management post in Hove in June 1984 and in December 1985 moved to the Wessex Hotel in Winchester.
Remaining a resident of Winchester ever since, Cllr Cunningham’s career subsequently took him to London as General Manager (Kensington Close Hotel – Kensington, Waldorf Hotel - Aldwich, International Hotel – Canary Wharf), and Operations Director UK (Citadines Aparthotels).
This was followed by a regional management role with THF Posthouse Hotels on the south coast covering Portsmouth, Fareham and Southampton. In 2008 he joined Bespoke Hotels as regional manager based at the Marwell Hotel and in 2010 moved to the Legacy Botley Grange Hotel & Spa. At the end of the contract, several appointments followed with both Bespoke and Legacy Hotels over the following two years in Cardiff, Croydon and Stratford-upon-Avon. Cllr Cunningham finally retired in 2014 and continues to live with his family in Littleton.
Cllr Cunningham married Joy in 1984 and they have three children Richard, Henry and Olivia.
Cllr Cunningham became Deputy Mayor in 2019 - 20, and in 2020 - 21, the 821st Mayor of Winchester, choosing as his charities Young Carers Winchester, Home-Start Winchester and Youth Options. He is very much looking forward to this challenging year together with his wife Joy at his side as Mayoress.