Mayor’s End of Year Speech 2021-22

Cllr Patricia Taylor

As my Mayoral Year ends, I would like to say a few words.

I have had a fantastic year, serving Todmorden and its people. It has been a great honour, both for me and my consort and husband David.  My thanks go to David, my son Bradley and his partner Inez for all their help and support throughout the year.

As Mayor, in the role of Chairman of the Council, it has been my pleasure to chair Full Town Council Meetings.  I would like to thank the Committee Chairs, all councillors, and Officers for assisting me in this, during what has turned out to be a very busy year for the Town Council.

Whilst a lot of business and activity is carried out under the guidance of our Committees and delivered through our Officers, many items come to full council for consideration and decision making.  In procedure there are always the first five items of business at every meeting. Full Council has either received presentations, information on or made decisions on some one hundred and fourteen items. Add to that the work of the Committees and the extent of the physical projects delivered, it has perhaps been one of the busiest Years yet for the Town Council in their ambitions to help the residents of Todmorden.

In my role as Mayor, I have had a very busy year, which was extremely welcome after the Pandemic called a halt to the usual pattern of civic duty.  It has been wonderful to see Todmorden return to life in the last 12 months and a privilege to have been a part of that re-emergence. My heartfelt thanks go to all those who invited me to their meetings, events and celebration’s this year.

With over a hundred invitations, there have been many highlights to my year.  From my first engagement at the opening of the canal side Play Barge area to my own final event Afternoon Tea with The Mayor,  last Sunday 8th of May.   I have been to two 100th Birthdays. One for Terry Halstead, son of Todmorden and probably Britain’s oldest active bellringer!

I have enjoyed outstanding theatrical and musical entertainment, I have had the pleasure of visiting our schools, who have been instrumental In helping us deliver some fantastic new festive lights for the town in 2021.

It’s interesting to note that my Highschool Year (Todmorden High School) produced four Todmorden Town Mayors.

I enjoyed a Karaoke session with the Nightlife group, stood with our service people on Remembrance Sunday and alongside women of the town on International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women.

I’ve helped to celebrate the victories and landmark events of community groups. I’ve seen our voluntary organisations and citizens rally round to provide services and funds, for those in need of support, within our town and beyond.  Most recently the incredible efforts made in aid of the people of the Ukraine.

I’ve judged competitions, I’ve started races, I’ve even tried my hand at crown green bowling and attended some incredibly well organised and enjoyable community events from Fundays to several Climate Summits.

I have been interviewed for Calendar news.  I have even been photographed on a skateboard!

All these plus invites to meetings, hosting meetings, Council Meetings, and my outside bodies meetings.

As Mayor I have been able to see some major projects come to fruition, most notably Todmorden Town Councils Wheels Park, which came about with the help of the Town Deals Accelerator Fund and also the redevelopment of Patmos Gardens, a Town Council funded project.

I have also seen Todmorden College where our Town Council officers are based, burst back into life under the Stewardship of a  dedicated group of volunteers and staff.

I am the first Todmorden Mayor to have an official Mayor’s page on Facebook, which I have diligently recorded my year as Mayor.

It has been a most varied year and at every engagement I have received a warm welcome and super support, and for that I am most grateful.  I am also grateful to those who have helped me in my role as Mayor over the last twelve months.

To my Deputy Mayor, Cllr Denis Skelton and all members of the Council. It has been a pleasure to work with you all and I have valued your friendship, counsel, and support.

Thanks to the Reverend John Jukes, who every year allows us to use St Mary’s Church for our Town carols.

The Town Clerk, Assistant Town Clerk, former Town Clerk now Project Manager, Climate Officer and particularly my Mayoral Officer, Nicola Pugh, who has done an incredible job in supporting me in so many ways.  All of our Officers work hard behind the scenes, to keep us all on track and help the Town Council to keep on delivering.

Last but by no means least, a big thank you to my chosen charity, Slow The Flow. They do such vital work, and it has been my honour to support them this year.

Finally, may I extend my very best wishes to Madam Mayor Elizabeth Thorpe. I wish her and her consort Paul Thorpe a successful and enjoyable year ahead in this most extraordinary honour of being Mayor of Todmorden.

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