SITTING down to write a seasonal message offers an opportunity to pause for a few minutes and reflect on what has been an incredibly enjoyable — not to mention hectic — seven months as Lord Mayor of Canterbury. And upon that reflection, there is no doubt in my mind that it is the people of our wonderful district who have made it so much fun. I have loved getting out and about and meeting charities who do some fantastic work on behalf of others, making such a difference to their local community. Where would we be without them? It was an honour to award three volunteers with a Lord Mayor’s Award in September, but such was the quality of the nominations, we could have given them out many times over.
We are blessed in our district to have some great events to enjoy and this year has been no different – with some bonuses thrown in. I was privileged to meet the Duke and Duchess of Cornwall when they visited the Whitstable Oyster Festival in July. Their trip generated such excitement and profile for the festival and they were clearly thrilled to be there. Apparently, it was an event they had been very keen to visit for years. And we also experienced a one-in-ten-year event — the enthronement of a new Archbishop of Canterbury. To be in the cathedral to see this occasion of truly international significance, broadcast live around the world, was very special. There have been moments of poignancy too, none more so than when the city said farewell to the Argyll and Sutherland Highlanders. The Queen came to inspect the regiment for one last time and their final parade up the high street made for emotional viewing.
Now that the Christmas festivities are over, the civic team is looking forward to a new year, and meeting more of our residents who make our district such a great place to live. I hope you all have a happy, healthy and prosperous 2014.
Lord Mayor of Canterbury
Herne Bay Times, January 2nd 2014