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Category: 2012-2013 Mayor Roger Berry

Mayor’s Week: 14-21 October 2016

Mayor’s Week: 14-21 October 2016

Our city and county have a rich musical heritage and one of the privileges of living here is that we can all enjoy a wide variety of musical performances. On Saturday, we heard the Worcester Cathedral Chamber Choir sing in St Martin’s Church, London Road. This is one of the finest chamber choirs in the country and this superb performance was a real treat.

Next day, in the Cathedral, a service commemorating the 800th anniversary of the death of King John was attended by a large congregation, including the Lord Lieutenant, the High Sheriff and members of the judiciary. King John’s remains lie before the high altar.  Bishop John’s sermon reminded us of King John’s reputation as an unpopular monarch and his association with Magna Carta, but also that he was not an entirely bad person. The very moving service included a procession of the entire congregation to lay lilies near the royal tomb. The cathedral choir and organ provided magnificent musical accompaniment.

Music of a very different variety could be heard this week at the Swan Theatre, where the Worcester Operatic and Dramatic Society performed Roger and Hammerstein’s musical South Pacific. The fully sold-out houses enjoyed hearing the large number of very well-known and popular songs. Mayoress Lynn and I were delighted to attend Tuesday’s performance.

Next Friday (28th) I have planned a Family Fun Day in the Guildhall from 10am to 3pm. This will include free magic shows, face painting, games and other activities for children during their half-term holiday. The whole family can join tours of our magnificent building. I look forward to meeting as many as possible and you can be photographed with both me and the official sword-bearer. I am collecting donations which will pay for local children from disadvantaged families to go on YHA adventure holidays and also for the Midlands Air Ambulance and hope that visitors will feel able to contribute to these very worthwhile causes.


Mayor’s Week: 6 – 12 May 2013

Mayor’s Week: 6 – 12 May 2013

After a very pleasant, warm and restful long bank holiday weekend, it was back to work on Tuesday with a meeting of the trustees at the Museum of Royal Worcester.  This gem in Worcester’s heritage has suffered from the closure of the Porcelain factory, and visitor numbers are only slowly recovering. Can I advise an early trip, to see what is a nationally recognised collection!

Later we attended a ceremony in the Assembly Room, when local people were awarded the British Empire Medal.  It was great to meet the local recipients and hear of their outstanding service to the community.

During the evening we attended the Choir School Association’s annual conference dinner in College Hall.  It was interesting to meet representatives from all the choir schools and to hear of their pleasure at spending time in the city, and making local visits to tourist attractions.

On Wednesday we opened the Prince’s Trust Community Project at Woodgreen Nursery in Trotshill Lane East. The students had not only raised the money, but had spent two weeks in building a concrete path and building a wood shed to help the children use the outdoor space in the summer.  Congratulations to Team 172 who worked so hard!

At lunchtime I was invited to the Friendly Lunch at The Guesten by Friends of the Cathedral. We not only enjoyed a meal together, but also discussed important local matters – particularly related to traffic in the city and improving Cathedral Square!

On Thursday we entertained a former Mayoress to tea in The Parlour.  We were visited by Mrs Lewis and her daughter Pat Turner, and were truly entertained with memories of the past and stories of their life in Worcester.

Later in the evening, we were invited to attend the Rotary Club of Worcester’s Severn Vocational and Community Service Awards Dinner at the Race Course.  It was most interesting to meet the two award winners, and hear of their long service as volunteers.

Afterwards I spoke of my experience as Mayor and raised some of the “wicked issues” that are facing the City Council.  We enjoyed a lively question and answer session, to conclude a very enjoyable evening.

On Friday we welcomed friends and representatives of voluntary organisations to our “farewell fling” in the Guildhall over lunchtime. We enjoyed meeting so many old friends and thanked them for their support after such a busy year as Mayor.  I was able to announce that we had raised over £28,000 to benefit the mayoral charities.

This is Councillor Roger Berry's last week as Mayor of Worcester
This is Councillor Roger Berry’s last week as Mayor of Worcester

Later in the evening we visited the Almonry in Evesham and were entertained to a meal by Councillor Robert Raphael as a farewell to the “Chains” over the last municipal year.

On Saturday the Deputy Mayor, Councillor Pat Agar, attended the Young Firefighters’ Passing Out Parade at Droitwich.


Mayor’s Week: 21 – 28 April 2013

Mayor’s Week: 21 – 28 April 2013

Last Sunday was dominated by St George’s Day events; first a Cathedral service, and then the annual march past the Guildhall where we took the salute. Congratulations to the Second Worcesters who took overall responsibility for the day, and the many parents and children who took part in the well-supported event.

Later we showed representatives around the Guildhall including the Assembly Room and Cells, which provided a source of real interest.

On Monday we were asked to open the recently refurbished Warmstry Court  – I well remember it being built on the site of the former “City Rag Stores”!  It was great to see the improved accommodation which has been created by Thomas Vale Construction.

Tuesday saw my final meeting as Chair of the World War 1 commemoration committee, where we approved a new structure to produce a more streamlined organisation.

Later we supported the Mayor of Evesham’s St George’s Day event, held at the refurbished Regal Cinema in Evesham.  It is a beautiful example of Art Deco, and hosted a most enjoyable evening, courtesy of Councillor Robert Raphael.

Wednesday saw us attending the Civic Society’s annual Mayor’s lecture, “From Austerity to Prosperity”, which was given By Professor David Green, Vice Chancellor of the University of Worcester.  It was a bullish presentation, calling for re-investment in infrastructure as an alternative to continued stagnation!

On Friday we entertained another prize winner with coffee in the Parlour.  Later we joined MP Robin Walker for the opening of Second Chance Furnishings – a subsidiary of St Paul’s Hostel for the Homeless.  We met a number of volunteers and service users, who are fully engaged in this most interesting project.

During the evening we attended a civic Charity Dinner at Hagley Hall, for the Civic Head of Bromsgove’s charities.

I joined members of the Clothiers Society for a farm tour at Top Barn Farm on Saturday.  I was impressed with the link between farm and countryside, and the many local voluntary bodies who are supported by this interesting diversification from farming.

During the afternoon we made a final trip to St George’s Lane, where I attended the last football match against Chester FC.  It was an afternoon of mixed emotions, and it does seem sad that no suitable local ground-sharing facility could have been arranged!

During the evening Jill and I attended our penultimate fund- raiser, with the Great Witley Operatic Society and Friends presenting the concert version of “Pirates of Penzance”.  It was sensational, the packed audience enjoying a superb evening. Our thanks to so many volunteers, friends and performers in particular, who gave up their Saturday for such an enjoyable evening’s performance. Thanks to Jane Dodd who was the leading soprano, Sue Black MD and Caroline Causier, who spent so much time organising the event over the past nine months.

Leading soprano Jane Dodd
Leading soprano Jane Dodd
Mayor’s Week: 6 – 14 April 2013

Mayor’s Week: 6 – 14 April 2013

Saturday brought a great chance to see the opportunities offered by Worcester U3A (University of the Third Age), as I opened their Cameo event. This was held at Christopher Whitehead Language College in Bromwich Road and the Mayoress and I enjoyed meeting over 300 members of the U3A and hearing about the opportunities offered to them in their “third age”.

Mayor of Worcester Roger Berry launches Worcester Community Trust's consultation
The Mayor & Mayoress help launch Worcester Community Trust’s consultation

I enjoyed a real first on Sunday, when I was asked to christen a new boat, the Floreat Vigornia, at The Rowing Club. It was great to see the opportunities there are for young people at the club and to see them making such great and safe use of the city’s river.

On Monday I joined Worcester Community Trust for their Community Consultation event in Bell Square. The Mayoress and I were delighted to meet young people who attend the Tolly Youth Club.

On Tuesday I chaired a consultation afternoon at the Guildhall to discuss the commemoration of the centenary of World War I. It was attended by representatives from throughout Worcestershire and I hope it will be possible to co-ordinate events across the county over the next four years.

I was delighted to welcome the successful Worcester University Men’s Basketball Team to the Mayor’s Parlour in the Guildhall on Wednesday. It was a privilege to meet the team who have won the National University Men’s Basketball title for the third year in succession.

The Mayor & Mayoress with Worcester University Men's Basketball Team
The Mayor & Mayoress with Worcester University Men’s Basketball Team

Later on, I had the honour of presenting four Long Service Awards to council staff who have served over 25 years continuous service each. It was great to meet them and their families. What a true commitment to the Council!

That evening we were guests of Great Witley Operatic Society at their  production Of Oklahoma! at The Swan Theatre. Congratulations to Musical Director Sue Black, Director Chris Love and all the cast and backstage crew on an excellent production.

Thursday brought the opening of local firm Postcode Anywhere’s new offices at Diglis. It was great to meet such an enthusiastic group of staff who will surely enjoy working in these excellent premises.

On Saturday we attended a gala concert by The Orchestra of The Swan and Chamber Choir at Pershore Abbey. It was promoted by the Worcester Friends of The Three Choirs Festival to raise funds for the festival when it returns to Worcester in 2014.


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