Being my last Mayoral column, I must express my sincere thanks and gratitude to all the people of Worcester for your unfailing kindnesses, hospitality, and respect everywhere I’ve been in the City. I hope I have been an innovative and imaginative Mayor.
In reviewing all the Mayoral functions, I wanted to open up the Mayoralty and include the people of Worcester in its workings; and to recognise and reward the good work that so many people do for the benefit of others – hence the first-ever Mayor’s People’s Banquet and first-ever Mayor’s Charity Dinner and Community Awards Ceremony.
My Come On In Project is a continuing ambitious programme to set up a citywide network of luncheon clubs/snack & chat/meet & greet groups to tackle the problem of loneliness amongst older people, whilst my Be My Guest programme invited all the City schools to come in to The Parlour for a tour-tea-chat. I saw how much the children (and adults) loved their visits down the cells, seeing and touching the ceremonial sword, and getting their hands on the Chain of Office!
Every unique day afforded different highlights but amongst the top must include driving a British army tank in Germany and firing live shells; raising a record-breaking £40,000+ for my charities; riding the Christmas carousel in full regalia; and being featured in the local Sports pages!
I hope I have demonstrated hard work and a sense of humour in carrying out my tasks as I have discovered that Worcester has more groups, societies, and clubs per head of the population than anywhere else. They cover just about every interest, leaving no-one bored as they take advantage of our history, culture, arts, and unique location.
My last week was, as usual, was packed with a huge range of events, including the Swan Theatre’s performance of “Pride & Prejudice”; observing a two minute silence for VE Day; observing the workings of the Crown Court; attending a Buckingham Palace Garden Party; hosting a Civic Reception for a high level business delegation from Zhejang Province in China; hosting the Mayor’s Charity Concert by the Worcester Male Voice Choir; officially opening the Worcester Motor Festival; officially opening the Festival of the Fountain on Quay Street; attending the Licensing and Installation of the Revd. Charles Thomas at St. Wulstan’s Church in Warndon, and enjoying the Swan Theatre’s Gala Night. Phew!
My Parlour guests included Tom and Kyle from Riversides School; a group of volunteers from Lyppard Hub; Harry Turner, Chairman of the Acute Hospitals Trust; Les Martin and June, an Australian friend.