The week has been dominated by the “near miss” from flooding in the city; our sympathies go to those who suffered. I’ve also been very occupied with arrangements for the twentieth annual Christmas Fayre, which was launched in bright but cold winter weather.
On Monday I attended my last meeting of Nexus Housing association, where I was presented with gifts to acknowledge the 25 years of service I’ve given to the organisation. But there was no time to get emotional! It was straight on to the licensing and induction event for the Reverend Christine Turpin at St Wulstan’s in Warndon. It was a very warm affair, where I met congregations from both the old parishes and the new. Jill and I look forward to working with Christine over the coming months.
The following day saw us joining forces with the British Legion to plant a tree in Gheluvelt Park, celebrating the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee. It was pleasing to welcome so many old friends at the nature reserve in beautiful, sunny but bitterly cold weather.
Later that evening I chaired a marathon meeting at the City Council, which lasted until after midnight. Some fundamental decisions were made about the future role of the organisation at this session.
Wednesday saw Jill and I visiting ASPIE’s new headquarters in Sansome Walk. This association is proud to help Asperger’s sufferers with the problems of unemployment, social isolation, in a warm and caring environment.
Afterwards we visited Worcester University where David Behan, the new Chief Executive of the Care Quality Commission, gave an inspirational address on the subject of leadership.
On Thursday we joined Cathedral and civic dignitaries in procession for the opening of the twentieth annual Christmas Fayre at Cornmarket. What a great success the event is, now covering the whole of the city and bringing together partners and representatives from three of our twinned cities. We have moved a long way from the first Fayre, which was solely in New Street and Friar Street!
The week ended with a whole series of celebrations. I attended a party to celebrate Perrywood school’s 60th anniversary, and then planted a time-capsule for future generations to discover. The children thoroughly enjoyed the occasion, with a party for the whole school.
We made a quick return to the Parlour, where we showed Mayor Theodor Brauer and his party of councillors and partners some of the civic treasures. They certainly enjoyed the history. It is amazing what we councillors have in common with Kleve!
We then toured the Christmas Fayre with VisitWorcester and met stallholders in a wonderful atmosphere. The quality of stalls has improved over the years and we were pleased to see so many people dressed in Victorian costume. Great also to meet a huge number of local people enjoying the occasion.
Finally, Jill and I went to the annual Labour Party Bazaar, where we were joined with members of the Twinning Association. In the evening we enjoyed a Christmas meal at the Hick Suite in the Cricket Ground. It was great to meet representatives of our three twin cities informally, and to enjoy their company.
Last but not least, on Sunday we presented prizes to stallholders at what must have been one of the most successful Christmas Fayres ever!