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Mayors blog 2016-17

Visit to Prospect at Savernake Hospital

The Mayor and Zoe O'Reilly with the lifting cushionFriday, 9th December 2016

In September 2016 Marlborough Town Council awarded a grant of £2,040 to Prospect for the purpose of a new lifting cushion for use at the Outreach Centre at Savernake Hospital.

Today I was able to see the 'end product' and to appreciate that this piece of equipment will enable a patient to be lifted from the floor with the help of just one person. It's estimated that this equipment could benefit as many as 100 people a year.

Prospect supports people who are dying and also those who are grieving. It is a local charity and all services are free of charge to patients and families. Zoe O'Reilly and Felicity Hindle were on hand to show just how the lifting cushion operates.

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Marlborough Concert Orchestra at St Mary's Church

MCO December 2016Saturday, 3rd December 2016

We have come to expect excellence from our Marlborough Concert Orchestra and this evening was exceptional. The main part of the programme was a Brahms Double Concerto in A minor for violin and cello. The two soloists were superb, Irene Enzlin (cello) a former Yehudi Menuhin School pupil with a Marlborough connection and the violinist Vera Chen who has been playing since the age of seven. Both are good friends and had an obvious rapport. We were charmed by them both, a sublime performance.

We are so lucky to have a Concert Orchestra of such a high standard here in Marlborough, they provide us with a splendid evening's entertainment.

Now, we must all be patient and look forward to their next concert on 25th March 2017.

A big thank you to all of them and special thanks to Rob Napier and Anna Marsden too.

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Savernake View Care Home

Friday, 2nd December 2016

christmas-1849263 1280Susan and I were greeted at Savernake View by Managers Sarah Jacka and Beth Goldsby prior to switching on the Christmas lights at this new care home. We were treated to carol singing from the choir 'Help for Heroes' from Burbage. All of us were encouraged to join in and then a young lady sang a solo - 'Frosty the Snowman'. This was particularly charming. The atmosphere was warm and many of the residents from Priory Court (part of the whole development) attended as well as many of the care home residents and their families.

After the Christmas lights had been switched on I presented a Care Certificate to a senior member of the care staff before being shown some of the home's modern facilities including an impressive cinema which boasts comfortable armchairs with footrests and a starry lit ceiling. We have been promised a more comprehensive tour in the New Year and will look forward to that.

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Craft Fair in the Town Hall

Fred Wilcox with Susan and Mayor Cllr Noel Barrett-MortonSaturday, 19th November 2016

My wife Susan and I met Fred Wilcox this morning at the Town Hall to open a weekend Craft Fair.

The stalls were stacked with original, hand-made gifts and there was a very happy atmosphere. This is a lovely place to purchase something special for Christmas - all very different from mass produced goods. Fred has been running this event for many years and every year he has made a collection for the Mayor's Charity and this year my charities are Swift Medics and Wiltshire Air Ambulance. We are very lucky to have someone with such a generous community spirit running this annual event.


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Christmas Lights Switch-on

Friday, 18th November 2016

countdownIt may have rained on Friday evening and was cold but, it certainly did not dampen the enthusiasm of the many people, lots of young families, who braved the elements. Having boarded the sleigh and joined Father Christmas outside the Town Hall we processed behind our Beadle and Town Cryer, Mike Tupman, MBE and Macebearer, Barry Mercer. We travelled all along the south side of the High Street and back up to the stage on the north side. Nigel Kerton was MC for the evening and the audience had been treated to music and singing from St John's Band, Marlborough Academy of Dance and Drama, the Marlborough Community Choir and the Marlborough Rock Band. All contributed magnificently to the event. Just before the switching-on of the lights, I announced the 2016 Citizen of the Year, Anne Crawley, Chair of Marlborough in Bloom. Anne has contributed so much to the town entries into South West in Bloom. I presented her with a beautiful engraved glass bowl. Together we pressed the 'magic plunger' and the Christmas lights became a reality. It marks the beginning of the festive season here in Marlborough.

More photos in our gallery

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Fairtrade Presentations

Fairtrade plaqueTuesday, 15th November 2016

I had great pleasure in presenting a plaque to the Managers of Waitrose, Polly's Tearooms, Pizza Express, the Marlborough Pub and Valentiners Design for their stocking of Fairtrade Products. Marlborough is now an official Fairtrade Town and long may this continue. The event was organised by Tesco Manager, Nick Helps and Dr Nick Maurice.

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Remembrance Sunday

Sunday, 13th November 2016

Mayor reviewing troopsA day when we all remember those who died for us in World Wars and the poignancy of the occasion is palpable. One cannot help but be aware that all across the nation in towns, cities and villages this two minutes silence is being observed. This year marked the 100th anniversary of the Battle of the Somme and when one learns that over 19,000 men lost their lives on the very first day of the battle then this is indeed a reason to pause for thought.

Prior to our church service in St Mary's, I was privileged to review the members of 4th Military Intelligence Battalion with the Colonel Matt Jones and RSM Paul Inverarity together with Cadet Forces from Marlborough College, St John's and other assembled groups including the Scouts and Brownies.

At the appointed hour with military precision we marched to the Marlborough War Memorial behind the Phoenix Brass Band to observe the two minute silence and the laying of wreaths. With my fellow Councillors and the Colonel, we went to the High Walls to observe the march past and salute prior to joining the large congregation for the Service of Remembrance. This was conducted by the Rector of Marlborough, Canon Andrew Studdert-Kennedy and the sermon was preached by Rev. Dr Janneke Blokland.

More photos in our gallery

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Armistice Day

Friday, 11th November 2016

The Mayor lays a wreath at the Wiltshire Regiment memorialAlways a solemn day where we reflect on those who gave their lives for us and a chance for us to pay them their due respect. I was joined on the steps of the Town Hall by Councillors including Councillor Alec Light, Chairman of the British Legion, my Chaplain, Dr Janneke Blokland, members of 4MI Battalion plus the Principal of St John's Academy with her Head Boy and Head Girl. Also in attendance were many students also from St John's. After the two minute silence had been observed, we processed to the War Memorial in London Road for the laying of our wreaths. Afterwards I visited, with Councillors Andrew Ross and Alec Light, those Commonwealth War Graves at our cemeteries where we placed posies of poppies on each of the graves.

More photos in our gallery


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A trip to Bulford

greyhoundTuesday, 8th November 2016

I was privileged to be invited by Lt. Col. Matt Jones the Commanding Officer, to dine at the 4th Military Intelligence Battalion's Officers Mess at Bulford. The food and wine was first class and the hospitality second to none and I was made to feel extremely welcome. After dinner we sang the National Anthem which, I believe, is the tradition on these occasions. I was collected from home by a 2nd Lieutenance and left back home to Marlborough at the stroke of midnight.

A night to remember which I enjoyed.

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Mayor's Golf Match at Marlborough Golf Club

Thursday 13th October 2016

cropped golfI have to start by confessing that I do not play golf! However we assembled a very respectable team in the shape of members of the Town's Grounds Team plus our inimitable Town Cryer/Beadle Mike Tupman MBE and four representatives from the 4th Miliary Intelligence Battalion at Bulford. All I can say about the outcome of the match is that we came second!!! An enjoyable and friendly match followed by a delicious dinner.

This year the Rose Bowl Trophy eluded us - perhaps next year we may even have a 'golfing Mayor'.

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