I read the Mayor’s Column this week. No, I mean I read it. Out loud. For the Talking Newspaper. Last week’s sounded great – one of my better ones I am sure you agree! The Talking Newspaper has been around Worcester for over 40 years and is doing a great job, adapting with technology and run by volunteers (new volunteers are always welcome!) so that people with sight impairments can keep up with local news.
One of the more predictable events of this New Year, with all that rain, is of course the havoc it brings to our Severn flood plain. I hope those most affected have been able to develop some mitigation and prevention, and know where to go for support and advice. Natural and captivating, it is also worrying, unpleasant, dangerous even, for those caught up in it. And a cold snap will bring its own problems, especially in these financially challenging times.
In advance of Chinese New Year I hosted a small party of Chinese students this week. They are studying at our University which has a great reputation in China. With local businesses I visited our sister city of Huizhou a few years ago, along with Hezhou, the wider Guangdong Province and that area of the South China Sea. Really interesting experience and it was great to talk to these young people about their culture and their experiences of Worcester (all good by the way).
I also met the Conservation Officer of SAVE, a national heritage organisation, who lives in Worcester, to discuss various projects and their implications and opportunities. Ironically I had also been to look at progress inside the Scala Theatre. It is a beautiful building and this will be a fantastic resource when it is fully restored and operating as an arts venue.