Chamber of Commerce chairman, Colin Wright, has decided to step down from the role with his deputy Tony McCollum set to take over.
Mr Wright has been a member of the chamber for 12 years and chairman for eight. He is stepping down from the position to spend more time with his family.
At the Annual General Meeting in March, he was awarded the title of honorary president for his services to the group.
Mr Wright said: “Being elected as chairman at an AGM all those years ago came as a complete surprise and really was a roller coaster learning curve.
“I’d like to thank a great team around me, the blow was softened by the help of the committee and I shall always be extremely grateful for their support over many years.”
He continued: “My time as chairman has been a fantastic experience and I have met so many amiable people – both locally and in businesses – all over the country.
“It’s amazing how many chambers experience the same sort of problems – car parking, high rates and planning applications, all topped off with little or no money in the kitty to promote themselves or their towns.
“We have been so lucky in the support that we have received both from our local chamber and East Devon District Council.”
Mr Wright said one of the highlights of his time in charge was last year’s Christmas light display: “It was extremely rewarding to discuss a proposal at committee meeting and finally see it come to a satisfactory conclusion some time later.”
Under Mr Wright, the chamber has assisted with planning applications and rate reviews and has tried to keep most of the shops in town occupied.
Mr Wright concluded by saying: “I am looking forward to continuing my association with the chamber as president and am honoured to be invited to take up this post.
“I will give our new chairman, Tony McCollum, all the support he needs whilst being able to take more time out to spend with the family and undertake new projects at home.”
Mandy Newman, owner of Beauchamp House and, alongside incoming chairman Tony McCollum, helped to organise the fantastic Christmas lights last year said he would be missed.
She said: “It is with great sadness that we see Colin Wright stepping down as chairman of the Honiton Chamber of Commerce.
“He has worked tirelessly for the good of the business community – well beyond the normal commitment of a chairman and will be a hard act to follow. He will be greatly missed.”
Bob Francis, a Honiton Lion and regular attendee of the Honiton chamber breakfast meetings, added: “Honiton and District Lions Club can only praise Colin for the work he has done for the town and local businesses, especially in linking them with the Lions Club assisting the local community whenever the need arose. The Lions wish Colin well in to the future at a more leisurely pace.”