The Mayor made the following announcements:
First I would like to begin by welcoming Councillors and the Public, as well as my Mayoress Marcia Chamberlain, to the chamber this evening.
For those members of the public who are not familiar with the workings of the chamber, while you are very welcome to observe, only elected Councillors are able to participate in the debate.
2. Beacon Council
Before I get on to my main announcements, I have been asked if I would present aBeacon status award for Supporting Independent Living for Disabled Adults to representatives here tonight.
The award of Beacon status is of course widely recognised as the most prestigious of all Local Government Awards and I am happy here to help recognise the hard work done at all levels in Council, which has lead to the award.
Very well done and thank you.”
The Mayor then gave the following report on his year in office:
“Well the time since last May has gone quickly, very quickly. This is the last Council meeting I am due to chair.
Yes that was the prompt for sympathy.
Over the past year the Mayoral office has received invitations for well in excess of 300 events and between us we have attended the vast majority of those. The events have ranged from youth games covering whole weekends to midnight walks in support of charity.
You will know from my reports to this chamber the breadth of activity happening in Enfield, before I even begin to address the wider representational role outside the Borough.
In terms of attendance I have personally attended three quarters of the events, which I am told is a good batting average, as often you need to be in two places at once, with events tending to crowd the weekends and evenings; while avoiding holiday periods and creating marathon back to back duties at times.
In performing those duties, my philosophy as Mayor has been simple,
If I am available I will come along; once there I will stay as long as I am welcome; and if feasible I will meet and talk to as many people as possible.
People want to meet their Mayor.
2. Events of greater note
In compiling this announcement I started to list events I thought merited special mention, that was a mistake; after I got past the first 80 or so, I realised your patience was going to run out long before my list, so I have arbitrarily picked a few themes to narrow this down.
I am honoured to recall that I had the privilege of signing the historic twinning agreements between our Borough and the Municipalities of Halandri in Athens and Sariyer in Istanbul.
I look forward to seeing the continuing friendship develop on many levels.
I have presented awards for literally more causes than I can recall. Awards for volunteering, long service, dealing with youth offenders, public speaking, high achievers, enterprise and innovation, not to mention awards to the finest and bravest in the Borough. Just gives a flavour of it.
I have also received awards on Enfield’s behalf both from Enfield in Bloom and for our continuing good performance at the New Year’s Day parade.
5. Remembrance Services
An important part of my role has been to assist in the commemoration of major events and the people involved in them
Apart from the major Remembrance Services, I have attended ones for both the Battle of Britain and the Battle of the Baltic.
I should also mention in this context the commemoration of the 75th anniversary of the Dumholme Air Disaster, which struck quite a cord with the general public.
Apart from the remembering the fallen and lost, I have also been involved in recognising the achievements of those who survived.
I have met and entertained Veterans from all services and most recently earlier this month the Land Army Girls, of whom there is a surprisingly large number in the borough. They are a lively bunch, with the youngest in the mid 80s and the oldest admitting to be 95. They were also glad to meet, as was I, Mr Graham Eustance DL OBE at this event.
At the outset of my year I set out my objective to assist charities directly in their fund raising which I have been pleased to do when ever the opportunity presented itself, although I still have unfinished business with the Nightingale trust’s giant bike ride, which hopefully will not go missing this time, and if I wear cycle shorts I will be expecting a lot of Councillors to sponsor me.
Apart from assisting charities I am pleased to note that even in these more trying economic times we have still raised over £32,000 for my charities fund and when the figures are finalised in June I hope to be delivering sizeable cheques according to the formula I set out in my announcements last May.
7. Sad News
No summation of the last year can pass without mentioning the sad loss that this chamber has experienced with the death of two sitting Councillors. Deputy Mayor Cllr John Jackson and Cllr Chris Andrew.
Both were talented men with things to look forward to who leave behind them grieving families, whom have our deepest condolences. I am sure they will be long remembered very fondly by members.
Before I conclude I have a number of thank yous’.
Firstly I would like to thank all the former Mayors who stepped into the breach and ensured normal service was continued. In particular I would like to thank former Mayors, Councillor Anne Marie Pearce and Councillor Tony Dey for their ever-present support.
I would also like to add my thanks to Theresa Egan and her colleagues for their hard work in making the Land Girls celebration a success. A special mention has to go to former Mayor and Councillor, John Egan, a real trooper, whom I saw with sleeves rolled up and arms deep at the sink, as I moved on to my next event.
I would also of course like to thank Rhoda Aldridge, Norman Bremner and Stephen Rose for their continuing hard work in keeping me on time, in the right place and well briefed and organised.
The office of Mayor could not function without them.
9. To conclude
At the outset of the year I set out the standards I would adhere to and I am confident that I have continued to keep to those, with the constitution as my guiding light.
To be Mayor is to hold a position of great trust, to represent the whole Borough and to act in this chamber as an impartial adjudicator. I thank you for that trust and for the honour holding this role has bestowed upon me.
There is still a month to go before my year-ends and I am not done yet, I intend to continue as I have before. I will I am sure really miss holding this extraordinary position, but similarly I am looking forward to resuming my normal role as a Councillor.