Councillor Sean Fielding became Oldham Council Leader on May 23, 2018. 

The 28-year-old has served the Failsworth West ward - where he lives with his girlfriend Sophie - since 2012. 

When first elected he was one of the youngest UK councillors and was immediately given a role as Assistant Cabinet Member by then Leader, Jim McMahon. 

Sean was jointly named the LGiU Young Councillor of the Year alongside fellow Assistant Cabinet Members Amanda Chadderton and Arooj Shah (who is now Deputy Leader) in 2013. 

He first came to prominence through his involvement with Fairness campaigns: launching ‘Fares Fair’ to tackle Oldham’s disproportionately high bus fares and deliver more affordable travel to help people access job and training opportunities. His lobbying led First Bus to slash fares by 30 per cent and this was later extended to all passengers across Greater Manchester, benefitting thousands of people. 

Sean is a member of the Labour Party, the Co-operative party and UNISON and he was re-elected to serve Failsworth West with an increased majority in local elections in May 2016. 

He won a ballot at the Labour AGM to succeed Jean Stretton as the new Labour Group leader on May 8, 2018.

As the new Council Leader, Sean is undertaking a review of the Oldham Town Centre Masterplan. He is fully committed to ambitious plans to regenerate and transform the area but wants more focus on town centre living and is re-examining proposals for the QE Hall and Tommyfield Market to ensure they are right for the future. 

Sean’s immediate priorities include delivering good quality affordable homes, more work to increase social mobility and education, investing in repairing the roads network, and securing further investment in the borough to create good jobs for residents. 

Born at the Royal Oldham Hospital on January 10, 1990, he attended South Failsworth and Failsworth schools. His father is a local bus driver and his mother used to work at Manchester City Council.

Sean is the youngest-ever leader of Oldham Council and bought his first house in Failsworth with Sophie in 2016.

He believes in having a strong Cabinet team and values the great partnership working drives Oldham Council’s co-operative model of working.

The office

The Council operates a "strong leader" cabinet model, under which the person elected to be the Leader of the Council personally holds all the executive decision making powers.

It a matter of discretion for the Leader whether he/she exercises those powers personally or delegates them.

The Leader may delegate his/her power to:

  • The Cabinet
  • A Cabinet Member
  • A Committee of the Cabinet
  • An Officer in consultation with a Cabinet Member

The Leader will also:

  1. Provide appropriate political and strategic leadership and direction for the Council
  2. Appoint between one and eight councillors, plus a deputy leader, to serve as the Council’s Cabinet
  3. Agree the division of cabinet portfolios
  4. Lead and chair the Cabinet to ensure its overall effectiveness
  5. Ensure effective communication of all executive decisions to the Council and public
  6. Ensure that the Cabinet manages the business of the Council within the policy framework and financial limits set by full Council
  7. Be the main member representative of the Council, acting as an ambassador and champion for Oldham and the Council in dealing with the community, businesses, voluntary and community sectors and other local and national organisations, other than in respect of ceremonial events.