A TORY councillor for Bush Hill Park has resigned from Enfield Council.

Eleftherios Savva handed in his letter of resignation yesterday morning, saying he needed to spend time in Cyprus help a family member with personal problems.

He has been travelling between the UK and Cyprus for several months, but now says he has decided to stand down to make way for a new councillor with full focus on the role.

In a letter to Bush Hill Park residents, Mr Savva said: “I have come to this difficult decision after a number of months of having to travel between Enfield and Cyprus, where a close family member has been experiencing serious personal problems that needed my help.

“Whilst I hoped that the situation could soon be resolved, it has become clear that my help will be needed long term.

“Although I have only missed one Full Council meeting since being re-elected last May, I fear that going forward I will not be able to serve you in the manner you deserve.”

Mr Savva was first elected in 2002 to represent Bush Hill Park ward, and raised almost £45,000 for charity during a term as Mayor of Enfield in 2009/2010.

He added: “I shall really miss it – for all the hours spent in meetings and reading reports there is great satisfaction in helping local residents in making our neighbourhoods better places to live.”

Councillor Michael Lavender, leader of the Conservative group, paid tribute to Mr Savva's service, saying: “He worked tirelessly for the people of Enfield over the last decade and he quite rightly wants to put his family first now.”

The resignation will now trigger a by-election in the ward, which returned three Conservatives at the last elections in 2010.