Well, the life of the Mayor is never dull! Since my last blog, I have attended the blessing of two Mayors, one in Malmsbury and the other in Devizes. These church services are traditionally to wish the new Mayors of these two towns a happy and productive year.
I was invited by Help for Heroes to visit Tedworth House in Tidworth to view facilities for wounded and disabled servicemen and women. It is simply amazing to see what these young people with injuries and disabilities have achieved and all living full and productive lives. It was a very humbling experience and I can only commend to you the wonderful work undertaken by this charity.
I attended the North East Scouts AGM. The evening began with an outdoor service to commemorate those Scouts who had joined up in the First World War and fallen in battle. It was shocking to realise how many Scouts and their leaders from this town and surrounding villages gave their lives in WW1 and sad to hear just how young they were. Their names and ranks were read out from the Roll of Honour and then the Last Post was played, it was very touching.
The 2nd of July saw me at Marlborough College for the Wiltshire School Games Sports Day to present some of the medals. Over a thousand children competed in every conceivable sport you could imagine. They did not all expect to win but, what I heard time and time again was that they were trying to achieve their “PB.” This, I was told, referred to their own ‘personal best.’ What a wonderful concept for young people to strive for.
On the 6th July I joined the Mencap Summer Party and as soon as I arrived I was told I was in the Patrick team and I spent a happy hour playing rounders before eating a delicious afternoon tea. My poor legs were bit stiff the next day but, it was worth it.
On Monday, 7th July, Councillors and members of the public assembled for a "Community Clean Up". This was in readiness for the South West in Bloom judge’s visit to the town. We dead-headed roses and dug the flower beds in Priory Gardens, picked up litter and weeds from the High Street, washed road signs and telephone boxes. Hard work but, very enjoyable. Afterwards we had a good natter over a cup of tea and went home well pleased with ourselves. My grateful thanks go out to this fantastic team. We will not know the outcome of our entry into South West in Bloom until September but, the judges did seem pleased.
On Thursday, 17th July, I presented certificates to pupils at St Peter’s school for their entries into the Poppy Painting competition run alongside Marlborough in Bloom. I will also be visiting Preshute and St Mary’s schools to award their certificates. I was delighted that all three of our infant, junior and primary schools took part in the competition. The paintings were charming and it was a difficult task to select the winning entries.
On Friday, 18th July I attended the opening of the Jazz Festival and a reception for Wiltshire Life. As I said at the beginning of this blog, a Mayor’s life is not dull, never boring and certainly very enjoyable.
Just a quick reminder about the Civil War Re-enactment on the Common on the 26th and 27th July. It promises to be an exciting weekend. The battle commences each day at 3pm where 17th century soldiers with muskets, horses and cannons will fight it out. There will also be a Living History exhibition in the Priory Gardens where you will see 17th century life as it was when Marlborough was overrun by the Royalists in 1642. Both events are provided free for the whole family. Just a word of caution, the battle will have muskets and cannons firing and will be very noisy so warn small children and perhaps leave your dog at home.