Thursday, 18 June 2015 11:20

Mayors News

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The Big Sing

On Wednesday 12th December I attended the annual Christmas Big Sing for our community which took place in the Pannier Market and it did seem that it was a record attendance. The children singing their Christmas songs was a highlight of the evening and really appreciated.  It showed the hard work involved by everyone in preparing for the event. The prayers and readings were simple but meaningful. Grateful thanks to everyone who helped make the evening such a success. We are so fortunate to have such caring, helpful community. On behalf of the Town Council I would like to reiterate Father Peter Bevan’s thanks to everyone involved in this very special community evening.


Santa's on the Run

On Sunday 9th December Cllr. Margaret Brown and I accepted the kind invitation to start the “Santa's on the Run” race at RHS Rosemoor. This was a fundraising event for the Children’s Hospice South West and attracted approximately 350 entries of all age groups and included wheelchairs, baby buggies and mobility scooters. The children were excited to see the “snow” falling (as were some of the adults) and it was great to see family groups taking part.

Our Town band were playing festive music which was enjoyed by everyone. Thank you Children’s Hospice South West and RHS Rosemoor for such a well organised event.  


Armistice Centenary Concert

On Saturday 8th December The North Devon Choral Society held the Armistice Centenary Concert in St Michaels and all Angels Church. It was very well attended and people remarked how beautiful the church looked with the poppies giving a symbolic reminder of the Armistice Centenary.

The music and songs were a true reflection of the tragedy by of war which affected everyone involved.  Nimrod - a rousing excerpt from Enigma Variations was very well received by all.  Many thanks to all who took part.  


Victorian Soiree

On Friday 7th December Cllr Margaret Brown and I attended a Victorian Soirée at the Torrington Methodist Church which was raising funds for Action for Children.

It was a lovely evening full of Victorian humour and music which was hosted by Mr Philip Collins. There were some lovely Victorian costumes worn by by members of the Church which added to the atmosphere. Many thanks to all the members who made such delicious deserts. The evening was rounded off with some beautiful Christmas Carols.  Thank you all for working so hard to make the evening a success.


Christmas comes to Great Torrington

On Saturday 1st December it really seemed that Torrington was ready for Christmas. The Pannier Market was full of stalls with Christmas gifts, foods, garlands, vegetables, chutneys, jams and more - lots of customers too.  


The Town Square was also very busy with the Grinchmas Christmas theme. It was lovely to see so many people enjoying themselves and getting into the Christmas spirit with lots of Christmas music.  Many thanks to everyone involved who made this day a great success. It is truly appreciated by everyone.    


Christmas Tree Festival

On Friday 30th November Cllr Margaret Brown and I visited St Petroc’s Church Christmas Tree Festival and what a pleasant surprise it was. There were twenty five trees dressed in such innovative and inspiring ways. We would like to thank the Church and parishioners who made us feel so welcome with hot tea and home made cake.  My favourites were no.4. “Remembrance” decorated in poppies by the Heritage Group and no.24. “Dogs Delight” dressed by the Dog Walkers using a lamppost ...of course!



Memory Café Coffee Morning

On Saturday 24th November we supported the Memory Cafe Coffee Morning held in the Methodist Church it was a lovely friendly atmosphere with lots of interesting things to buy. The organisers work hard to raise funds for this much needed service for people with memory problems and their carers.

Jazz at the Methodist Church

On Friday 23rd November I attended a great evening at the Methodist Church in Great Torrington.  This was a lovely community evening full of music and laughter. Many thanks to the Churchtown Unity Jazz Band who were as usual fantastic. The music ranged from the Old Rugged Cross, Brahms Cradle Song and an uplifting Bugle Boy March featuring  an original WW1 bugle.  Many thanks to the organisers of this event and of course the usual lovely refreshments.

Mayfair & Carnival Committee Meeting

On Tuesday 20th November we held our Mayfair and Carnival Committee meeting. Preparations are now going full steam ahead after a slight hiccup or two. We have a new secretary Cllr Gill Clayton who took over from the brilliant work of Natasha Batty. We wish Tash all the best in her move to Plymouth. We also have Sue Harrison who has kindly offered to help take on the selling of the raffle tickets which do bring in a substantial income for our Mayfair and Carnival celebrations.  But... we do need more people to help, in whatever way they can. 

NHS Documentary

On Sunday 18th November the Plough showed a documentary film “Groundswell” a thought provoking film about how the NHS has evolved since its beginning in 1948. This was a cross party film in which no potilical party came out very well.  This film has been entered in the Berlin Film Festival at the end of this year and will be followed by a production of a DVD available to the public.  I urge people to watch this documentary if you get the opportunity. 

 Dementia Awareness meeting

On Wednesday 14th November I chaired the Dementia Awareness meeting with the continuing aim for us to become a Dementia Awareness Town here in Great Torrington. It all seems to be getting together quite nicely with a great team who work so well together. Many shops, taxi drivers etc are very interested in undertaking training and Solomon Sing has kindly offered us a training room to use at his Hatchmoor Nursing Home. We are also very fortunate to have experienced trainers on board and an effective and professional administrative team led by Karen Chapman our Town Clerk and Charlotte Kirby our Deputy Town Clerk.

Remembrance Parade - Sunday 11th November 

There were a large number of people whom attended the Remembrance Parade and Service at the Great Torrington Cemetery, the weather was not as cold as in previous years and even the sun shone through. Thank you to all who attended this very special event which marked the 100th Anniversary of the end of the First World War (photos by Kristography).


Little Torrington commemoration of the end of World War 1

On Saturday November 10th I attended a truly wonderful evening to commemorate the end of World War 1 held at the Little Torrington Victory Hall. The Little Torrington Players presented a showcase of sketches, poems and songs from WW1.  

People were encouraged to wear the dress of that time and  I was asked to judge a winner of the best dressed.  I chose a lady who was fondly named the “old retainer” pictured in the second photo below.  


Remembrance Concert

St. Michael and All Angels Church was the venue of a Remembrance Concert to say Thank You to the many gallant men and women who joined together during 1914 -1918 to face down the threat to our way of life. The evening was full of war time songs, hymns, readings and poems all which were very relevant for Remembrance.  Many thanks to Liz Harris for organising this very special event and to all the people who took part.  

Christmas Fair

On Sunday 4th November a Christmas Fair was held at the Torrington Cycle Hire to raise funds for my two charities, North Devon Hospice and the Torrington Memory Café.  My grateful thanks to Anne Tattersall and Friends who helped organise this event. Many thanks to John, Jayne, Kim and Sid and the Cycle Hire for allowing us the use of this site.

Special thanks also to all the generous donations of cakes, crumbles, home made jams and chutneys, paintings, pottery and much more. I would also like to take this opportunity thank all the people that came and spent their money so generously.  The total raised was £1,015.89p. Thank you all.  


 Mayor of Tiverton's Charity Dinner

On Saturday November 3rd Cllr. Brown and I attended the kind invitation from the Mayor of Tiverton to the Charity Dinner and Auction held in Tiverton. This was a fundraising event for the Mayor’s charities which were are local groups and organisations including sports for all ages and children’s groups.   

Poppy Launch at RHS Rosemoor

On Friday 26th October The Royal British Legion Devon held the Devon County Poppy Launch at RHS Rosemoor.  This was the first time it was held in Great Torrington so it was a great honour. The event was both quite touching and poignant. Our grateful thanks to the Hon Sarah Lopes for her kind invitation to attend this memorable event


Mayor of South Molton's Charity Event

On Saturday 20th October Cllr Brown and I accepted the kind invitation to attend the Mayor of South Molton’s charity event at their beautiful Town Hall.  Proceeds of the evening were to be distributed between “See Hear” who provide equipment, information and support services for people with sensory loss such as hearing, sight and sometimes both and local children’s charities for various activities.

National Young Musician Competition 

On Wednesday 17th October the Rotary Club held their heat of the National Young Musician Competition at Great Torrington School. The finalists in this heat crossed many different genres of music. Well done to all the talented young people of GTS who took part. The winner of this heat will go forward to the next heat will be held in Fowey, Cornwall.

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