Mr Mayor's Diary: January 2007
Friday 5 January
We have just this one engagement this week, our first since Christmas.
Today, we were guests of the Lancashire, Cheshire and North Wales’ branch of the Showman’s Guild at their Annual Luncheon. This is held at a different venue in the region each year. This year was the turn of the James Braid Suite at Mere Golf and Country Club, Cheshire.
There was a huge turn-out of members and guests, with about fifty mayors in attendance. The Mayoress and I have many friends and acquaintances amongst the Showmen’s Guild and it was lovely to renew these. We met up with families we have known through our previous work and it was lovely to catch up with their progress. We met a number of mayors of boroughs we have not met before in our year of office including the Mayor of the City of Preston who sported a spectacular chain of office weighing 16lbs (about 6kilos)!
The Showmen expressed their gratitude to the boroughs and cities for their support locally, and we heard from Professor Vanessa Toulmin about the Showman’s Archive which is kept at Sheffield University and is a comprehensive history of the Showman’s way of life.
Monday 8 January
Today I attended the regular pre-council meeting to set the agenda for the full monthly council meeting. This meeting is attended by the leaders of all political parties and various officers of the council.
Wednesday 10 January
I chaired a meeting of my Charity Committee today. Members of the committee are helping to set up fundraising events for my charities: Salford Children’s Holiday Camp; The Feryal Rajah Trust (to assist women needing support on entering a medical profession); CAFOD (Catholic fund for Overseas Development) and Age Concern in Salford.
So far we have a Grand Raffle which will be drawn in April – prizes range from £1000 to £100. Tickets are £1 each and can be purchased at the civic centre via the Mayoral Office. Books of tickets are £5.
Forthcoming fundraising events are:
24 February – “Casino Royale” themed Charity Dinner and Dance at the five-star Lowry Hotel, Chapel Street, Salford. Tickets are £35 each but include dinner, entertainment and dancing throughout the evening. Additionally, there will be a Tombola and Charity Roulette to play. All profits go to the charities.
20 April – a Cabaret Evening at The Willows Club, Weaste Lane, Salford where dinner, entertainment and dancing will cost you £25 per ticket; or you can come along for the dancing and Las Vegas Nights cabaret for £8.
For more information and tickets, please contact Cathy Pickup in the Mayoral Office on 793 3064.
Sunday 14 January
This afternoon we were privileged to be guests of the Association of Ukrainians in Great Britain at their annual Christmas Concert and Reception held this year at the Ukrainian Club in Bolton. We were treated to a very vibrant display of dance and music by many people of all ages dressed in beautiful colourful hand-embroidered Ukrainian National costume. The community has been very successful in keeping the Ukrainian culture alive among many of the young people. It was very interesting for us to experience the music and dance of the Ukraine.
Monday 15 January
We had to be at the Crown Court, Crown Square, Manchester for 9.30am today, to attend the Reading of the Proclamation of the Courts of Justice. This is an ancient ceremony which at one time used to be performed four times a year, at the start of each legal term. Nowadays the ceremony is performed once a year, currently in January, although the legal year actually still begins in September, and its main point is the reading of a proclamation from the monarch, in our case Queen Elizabeth II authorising and commanding the judges and lawyers within to go about their business with integrity to maintain and promote law and justice among the citizens of our cities and boroughs. Mayors of local cities and boroughs waited in the Justice Building for the arrival of the senior judges and the High Sheriff who arrived to a police trumpet fanfare on the steps of the Courts. Then we all processed into one of the main courtrooms with judges, recorders and other legal people, magistrates and civic dignitaries, where the proclamation was read by one of the recorders.
Later we met with some business people who want to help with our charity work.
We spent the afternoon in the civic centre at a Mayoral Briefing meeting with officers of the council.
Tuesday 16 January
We attended the Annual General Meeting of the Court of Salford University held in the Harold Riley Suite, University House. This was a very formal meeting chaired by the Chancellor of the University, Sir Martin Harris. The Annual Report was presented outlining all the great progress since last year. There were questions and comments. In Any Other Business, the University gave its support to a local radio station for Salford. It was an interesting morning attended also by the Mayor and Mayoress of Bury Cllr and Mrs Jack Walton and the Mayor of Rochdale Cllr Jean Hornby.
We returned to the civic centre for a Citizenship Ceremony in the Council Chamber. This month there were twenty new citizens sworn in by the Registrars of the City in the presence of the Mayor. It was lovely to meet our new citizens and their families.
In the evening we went, as guests of the Prestwich Music Club, to St Paul’s Church, Moor Lane, Kersal to hear a piano recital by young people who have won competitions in the Piano Teachers’ of Great Britain Awards. The pianists ranged in age from eight to twenty-four and all were outstanding in their performance. It was a very enjoyable evening. Several of the performers were from Salford.
The Prestwich Music Club is celebrating 60 years of existence this year. For further information contact Mrs Jacqueline Wilkinson Tel 766 6872.
Wednesday 17 January
We visited Laburnum Court Residential Home, Priory Grove, Broughton on their open day. This home is especially for people suffering from dementia. It has a lovely atmosphere where residents are treated with great respect and much is done to enable them to communicate their needs and thoughts to staff. The manager and staff work very hard to create a lovely homely environment and relatives spoke very highly of the home.
At the civic centre later, I attended a council briefing and then entertained this month’s Mayor’s Citizen and family to lunch. This month the award went to Mrs Betty Lowe, aged 98, who still volunteers at the WRVS in the Ladywell Wing at Hope Hospital. She is still active in the Girl Guide Movement with which she has been associated since she was six! She had been nominated by a member of the nursing staff at Hope and was accompanied by two nieces and a friend. It was a privilege to meet Mrs Lowe. We had a lovely lunch and chat and then it was in to the Council Chamber to make the award followed by the full council meeting which I then chaired.
Thursday 18 January
I was guest of the Rotary Club of Irlam at their Charter Night Dinner held at Hemsley House, The Crescent. This was a lovely evening with the Rotarians who do an amazing amount of charity work in the city. The Rotary welcomes all no matter what their faith, race or culture and seeks to promote harmony and peace between all peoples through their fundraising and support of people who need help, while enjoying themselves along the way. Altogether an estimable society!
Friday 19 January
In the morning we attended an Administration meeting in the Parlour and sorted out the engagements for next week.
In the evening we were guests of the Dublin Association at their Annual Dinner Dance which was held at the Irish World Heritage Centre, Cheetham Hill, Manchester. We were made very welcome and thoroughly enjoyed the “craic”, most of which involved laughter, music and some great jokes.
Saturday 20 January
We attended the Annual Conference of the Greater Manchester County Royal British Legion at Boothstown Royal British Legion in Victoria Street, Boothstown. We are getting to know many of the Legion people quite well now as throughout the mayoralty we have regularly met up with this band of dedicated people who ensure that the Legion is able to work on for the benefit of service people and their families. There is still much work to do; this work did not cease after the end of World War II. There was a talk by Colonel Gibbs about the work of Broughton House, the home for disabled ex-service people and the proprietor of Byng House – a holiday hotel for service people and their families. Both places have undergone massive refurbishment recently to make them fit for the 21st Century. The Lord Lieutenant, Sir John Timmins was present. We had a welcoming and interesting day. New workers and members are always welcome. We were pleased to see the Memorial Garden, which we had formally opened last summer, looking so well in the winter sun and a brief service was held there before the conference.
Monday 22 January
Today we presented certificates to Looked After young people at a special celebration at Buile Hill Park Hall. The hall was crowded to capacity with young people, their families and carers, and staff from their schools. The awards were to young people who do not live with their own families for achievements relating to education. There was much cheering and clapping as they came forward for awards for achievements in attendance, behaviour and academic learning – the biggest cheers for a couple of young people, well-known at this annual celebration, who have now gone on to achieve university entrance, working against great odds throughout much of their lives. This event has taken place for the past six years and goes from strength to strength with more young people attending each year. The evening finished with a lively disco and refreshments. We felt honoured to be there.
Tuesday 23 January
We were guests of the University of the Third Age celebrating their 21st anniversary in Salford. This was established for anyone over fifty years old, initially in Eccles and has many members from West Salford. There are now about 300 members city-wide who meet together in various groupings to do such things as walking, heraldry research, foreign language study, embroidery – in fact anything anyone wants to do and can find others to share that interest. So, there was a lot to celebrate and a beautiful anniversary cake to cut. We had a lovely time and wish them well for the next 21 years.
Wednesday 24 January
We attended a Welcome Event at The Albion High School for the new eastern European migrant community in Salford. Several hundred people attended this event where we sampled some Polish dishes and immigrant workers and their families had an opportunity to find out more about life IN Salford and to meet some local people. We chatted to lots of lovely people and enjoyed sauerkraut and delicious open sandwiches. After this we were entertained by some very talented musicians. There were also talks from representatives of the City, one of our MPs Ian Stewart representing all our MPs, and Oxfam and the evening was concluded with a welcome from the Bishop of Salford, Terence Brain who was able to practice Polish learned during a visit to Poland.
Thursday 25 January
After an Administration meeting at the Civic Centre, we visited Broadwalk Pupil Referral Unit, Broadwalk FastTrack, Belvedere Road where we met teachers and pupils. We were very impressed by the quality of work being done and the interest shown by the young people in their visitors. We wish them every success as they move into their future lives.
Later we returned to Buile Hill Hall for an event with young people to commemorate Holocaust Memorial Day. Young people from St Augustine’s Primary School and The Swinton High School presented poems, music and dance to remind the audience, made up of representatives of many different faiths and cultures present in our city, of the horrors of such an event as this Holocaust. We were reminded of the terrible things perpetrated in Germany against Jewish people and others, including Romany gypsies, handicapped people, during the second world war. We thought about prejudice, bullying and physical violence and how one can lead so easily to another; we thought about how life can be made so different through tolerance and care for one another. Six candles were lit in memory of 6 million Jewish people who perished in the Holocaust. lit the seventh candle in memory of all the other groups and individuals who perished as a result of Nazi rule because of their political or religious beliefs, their disability, sexuality or ethnicity. The eighth candle was lit in memory of all victims of genocide throughout the world since the 1940’s. People came away determined to dispel darkness wherever it is found and committed to do all they can to make a positive contribution to our community.
Friday 26 January
I attended the Salford Children’s Book Award 2006 Ceremony at The Lowry in Salford Quays. This was a celebration of young people’s reading throughout last year when they had been asked to read books written by a group of authors and to appraise them. Several of the authors were present at the ceremony and the young people had an opportunity to hear and speak to them. I congratulate our Library Service for organising such a valuable and enjoyable event. I hope most young people will feel inspired to keep on reading and perhaps even try their hand at writing too.
In the afternoon, the Mayoress and I were guests at an open day at Age Concern Salford, Humphrey Booth Day Centre. We were made very welcome and toured the facilities which include a lovely community room, a quiet room, library, disabled bathing facility and dining room. We met many of the clients who speak very highly of the day centre and what it means to them, enabling them to spend some time in the company of others and enabling some assistance with bathing and care. Visits to places of interest are organised too and everyone seems to have a great time. Some people attend for one day and others for five days. The staff were friendly and caring and altogether it seems a wonderful place to be. Each week the members hold a lottery draw; I bought a ticket and won! However, my winnings have now found their way to my Charity Appeal. Well done Age Concern, Salford.
Saturday 27 January
We were guests of the Principal of the College of Performing Arts, Pendleton College in the evening for a performance of a musical “A Slice of Saturday Night”. Set in 1964 in a small town dance hall, the show’s teenagers party, dance and fall in love! This was superbly produced and professionally performed and thoroughly enjoyable. Some of us have real memories of 1964 and they were certainly captured by the cast! We are looking out for their next production.
Monday 29 January
This morning we were guests at a very moving event commemorating Holocaust Memorial Day, this time in the Compass Room at Salford Quays. This was organised by Children’s Services and the Schools Advisory Committee for Religious Education. Young people in Year 9 from six of our local high schools attended. The Hall was full of young people at 9am on a cold and wet Monday morning. Not the best way to start the week! You could have heard a pin drop as we all learned from a holocaust survivor and from the son of another holocaust survivor, the devastating story of their families. These life stories illustrate all the reasons why we need to have tolerance and respect for people whatever their differences. For us it pointed up the need to learn about each others faiths, cultures and histories, and to meet each other with respect and a desire to understand.
In the evening we attended a Sporting Dinner and Cabaret with Salford City Reds and their sponsors at the Willows Variety Centre, Salford. The evening was a thank you for the sponsors and a chance for them to meet the players at the start of the new season. Each sponsor presented their player with his shirt and several players were interviewed about their work for Salford City Reds. We had a lovely meal and enjoyed a lively cabaret and I was able to wish the team well for the coming season. Go for it Reds!
Tuesday 30 January
Accompanied by the Deputy Mayor, the Mayoress toured Crompton House to sell the Grand Raffle tickets. There are still quite a number available at £1 each or £5 for a book and can be obtained through the Mayoral Office on 793 3064. This raffle will be drawn at the Council Meeting in April with five prizes, the top being £1000; the proceeds will be divided among the 4 Mayoral charities.
Wednesday 31 January
I took a young guest to Old Trafford for the match between Manchester United and Watford.
Thursday 1 February
The Mayoress and Deputy Mayor went to Minerva House to offer Grand Raffle opportunities to staff there. People are being very generous, but there are still many tickets to go!
We returned to the Civic Centre for an Administration meeting.
In the evening we were guests at Bridgewater School, Drywood Hall, Worsley for their interesting productions of “Gizmo” and “The Musicians”, with very creditable performances by a number of young people and a huge amount of enjoyment for all.
Sunday 4 February
We attended a pre-season friendly Rugby League match between Swinton Lions and Salford Reds at Sedgley Park, Park Lane Whitefield. This was a very enjoyable afternoon and a challenging match which was won narrowly by the Lions. Both teams had large and loyal followings, often divided between what are essentially two great Salford RugbyTeams!
This page was last updated on 4 October 2009