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Joan de Carteret

From Rothwell Wiki

Joan de Carteret (26th July 1924 - 28 August 1975) was a councillor who served as the last Chairman of Rothwell Urban District Council and as the first Lord Mayor Elect of Leeds Metropolitan District Council.

de Carteret was active in local politics from around 1955, but became dissatisfied with the direction in which local government had developed over her 20 years and quit in 1975 following her term as Lord Mayor. She died, alongside her husband and two friends, a few months after her resignation, when the car she was in was crushed by a lorry.


Early life

Joan de Carteret was born Joan Moran on 26th July 1924[footnotes 1] to Harold Moran and Annie Moran (née Wilson). She had a brother, Harold Jr, and a sister, Kate.[1][unreliable source?]



Joan de Carteret was a Labour Party councillor[2] and became involved in local politics around the year 1955.[3]

Chairman of Rothwell Urban District Council

de Carteret was Chairman of the council when Pat Phoenix, who played Elsie Tanner in Coronation Street, opened Rothwell Gala in 1966.[4]

Before it became part of Leeds Metropolitan District Council in 1974, de Carteret was the last Chairman of Rothwell Urban District Council. After RUDC's dissolution she became one of the Rothwell ward's three new councillors, alongside Rose Lund and Arthur Benson.[4]

Lord Mayor of Leeds

Joan de Carteret was Lord Mayor of Leeds for the year 1974.[5] She was the first Mayor Elect of the new Leeds Metropolitan District Council.[4] Her Deputy Lord Mayor was Mr H. T. Booth.[6]

In September 1974, de Carteret held a reception for the re-opening of the Leeds Grand after improvement alterations and decorations. It was held on stage after a performance of Rose Marie and was attended by the Deputy Lord Mayor and Albert King, leader of the City Council and the new chairman of the theatre's board of directors.[6]

In October 1974, de Carteret opened Thurston's new bakery premises.[7]

In March 1975, de Carteret announced that she would be resigning from local government following the end of her term as Lord Mayor in May. She expressed her dissatisfaction with the way in which local government had developed over her 20 years:[3]

Local government is fast becoming a bureaucratic organisation, and more remote from the people.

I feel I have become ineffectual as a councillor for the people that I represent.

Developments are taking plpace [sic] that I know nothing about. Even though I have sent queries to officers of the council in some instances I have not even had a reply.

I have asked about all sorts of things but I have not had the courtesy of a satisfactory explanation and in some cases I have not had an answer at all.

It used to be so worthwhile being a councillor, but it is now becoming intolerable.

Joan de Carteret, "Mrs Leeds says: I'm out for good" in Daily Mail, 8 March 1975

Personal life

In c. 1946, Joan Moran married Leslie de Carteret.[8] Mr de Carteret was a school caretaker.[3] They had a daughter, Lesley Sidebottom,[4] and, as of 1975, had three grandchildren.[3]

Joan de Carteret lived at 6 Manor Close, Rothwell in 1967.[9]


On 28 August 1975, de Carteret, her husband Leslie, and friends Fred and Kate Tasker were killed when a 25-ton[footnotes 2] articulated lorry overturned on top of their car at a road junction at Hardisty Bridge, Blubberhouses, West Yorkshire. The lorry driver, Lawrence Southall, suffered minor injuries.[10]

Joan de Carteret and her husband were laid to rest in Rothwell Cemetery.[1]


  1. While this source is perhaps unreliable, attached to it is a picture of her gravestone that shows her age at her death (51) that corresponds to this year. The Daily Mail article (p.2) on her death from 29 August 1975 states her age as 61 and the Daily Telegraph (p.1) from the same date says 60, but an article from the Daily Mail on 20 March 1975 (p.8) says 50.
  2. The Daily Mail article referenced says 25-ton but the Daily Telegraph from 29 August 1975 ("4 Die in Crash", p.1) says 20-ton


  1. 1.0 1.1 Jen (49093752) (no date) Joan Moran de Carteret (1924-1975), Find a Grave. Available at: (Accessed: 29 August 2023).
  2. Anon (2013) Leeds73002.jpg (191x1024 pixels). Available at: (Accessed: 30 August 2023).
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 3.3 Daily Mail Reporter (1975) ‘Mrs Leeds says: I’m out for good’, Daily Mail, 20 March, p. 8.
  4. 4.0 4.1 4.2 4.3 Ward, S. (ed.) (2020) ‘Pat Phoenix in the park’, in Rothwell & District: Pictures & Memories from the Past. Leeds, West Yorkshire: Stephen Ward Photography & Publishing, p. 43.
  5. Leeds City Council (No date) Lord Mayors &; Aldermen of Leeds since 1626. Available at: (Accessed: 29 August 2023).
  6. 6.0 6.1 The Stage (1974) ‘Chit Chat’, 19 September, p. 12. Available at: (Accessed: 29 August 2023).
  7. Tuffrey, P. (2012) Yorkshire People at Work. Gloucestershire: Amberley Publishing. Available at: (Accessed: 29 August 2023).
  8. Anon (no date) Entry information, FreeBMD. Available at: (Accessed: 29 August 2023).
  9. Anon (1967) ‘Additions to Commissions’, Justice of the Peace and Local Government Review Reports, 131(33), p. 513–513. Available at: (Accessed: 29 August 2023).
  10. Daily Mail (1975) ‘Two are Killed in Coach Smash’, 29 August, p. 2. Available at: (Accessed: 29 August 2023).
By era Medieval None
16th Century None
17th Century Katherine Earle
18th Century None
19th Century None
20th Century Joan de Carteret, Rose Lund, William Lunn
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