Enfield’s new Labour leader has said she is “incredibly proud” to be the borough’s first female leader following her election this week.

Nesil Caliskan, who represents the Jubilee ward, won a surprise victory at Enfield Labour’s annual general meeting on Monday (May 14), narrowly beating long-serving leader Doug Taylor by 24 votes to 22.

Aged only 29, she will become the youngest council leader in London when she is formally appointed at Enfield Council’s annual meeting on May 23.

She said: “I am incredibly proud to be the first woman leader in Enfield Council. I will represent all of the borough’s diverse communities and strive to give every Enfield resident a voice.

“I became active in politics because I passionately believe in fairness and everyone being able to fulfil their potential. Our communities deserve well-funded public services.

“We must do more to combat the rise in serious crime, and Enfield Council will lead the way in tackling the housing crisis in London which is affecting many of our residents.”

Councillor Caliskan joined the Labour Party at the age of 15 and has campaigned for Labour in every election since 2004.

An Enfield resident her whole life, she works for NHS England in the national Equality and Health Inequality Team.

She was elected councillor for the Jubilee ward in a by-election in 2015.

Cllr Caliskan paid tribute to Cllr Taylor, who led the Labour group for eight years and recently oversaw a successful local election campaign that returned an increased Labour majority.

She said: “Doug has been a brilliant council leader who has steadied the ship during very difficult times for local authorities, at a time when this Conservative government has cut our budget by more than half since 2010.”