A very busy end to 2019 saw me attending several Carol Concerts, all well supported. Firstly our traditional Carols in the Market Place where it rained cats and dogs, but that didn’t stop the town turning out in force, cheerful and in good voice. Led by Father Brendan and supported by Churches Together with music provided by our own Faversham Brass. Then something new – Singalong Christmas rehearsed and produced by Rev Dan Cocoran, a very modern twist in a packed St Mary of Charity Parish Church with all ages taking part. I look forward to their production of Singalong Easter, rehearsals have started! My visit with the Carnival Courts to the Cottage Hospital and Cooksditch Nursing Home on Christmas Eve brightened up the wards, with their tiaras and beautiful dresses, brought smiles to the faces of patients and residents as we walked around. A highlight was meeting former Mayor, Kate Lee.
Visits to Luddenham School to present the prize to Summer for winning the Mayor’s Christmas Card Competition, then to Bysing Wood School as one of their pupils had won a prize to have Reindeers brought into the school All the children, staff and myself enjoyed these wonderful events.
I enjoyed my guided tour of both schools which showed me a great standard of education is being achieved by dedicated staff in a very happy environment. Attending the Presentation Evening at the Queen Elizabeth Grammar School proved to be a very emotional experience as Sponsors, Families, Students and Teachers saw the culmination of 5 years of hard work being rewarded. Three students from the school became World Champions in Abu Dhabi in F1 in schools model racing, a week long event involving 54 teams from 24 countries. This event an over the same weekend in which the Formula One Motor Racing was scheduled to take place in Abu Dhabi and they were invited to visit the pits and watch the race, where Lewis Hamilton was the winner. What an experience and thanks to everyone involved.
Working with and for our young people is vitally important to me. The Youth Cafe has been well received and attended and I am really intrigued to see how our next project works – A SILENT DISCO, tickets for this are already being booked. An enjoyable evening at the Alexander Centre saw the 2020 Carnival Queens and Courts for Faversham being selected and crowned. Another voluntary Committee working incredibly hard all year round to fulfil their commitments.
At a Cinque Ports event I visited Sandwich and learned from their museum how strongly we need our own museum to supplement those we already have to specifically house our Magna Carta, our Chain of Office, Charters, along with other artefacts for permanent display. Following our open consultation regarding the use of our Town Hall at 12 Market Place, most people wished for the area at the front to be used for community. Your Town Council are actively seeking funding to achieve this project.
Our temporary bridge over the Creek is now in place, with a welcomed safer pedestrian access. This is only a first step towards the permanent long term opening bridge to be completed.
On 2nd February I watched the musical presentation of ‘Our Beautiful Town’ amazing, I dread to think how our town might have looked today. Our thanks must go to the Faversham Society led by Arthur Percival and his team of visionaries, who with passion and determination saved so much of our historic town from demolition and preserved our historic heritage. My gratitude also to those who continue the work that these dogged pioneers started.
My personal thanks to all the Committees, Volunteers including Councillors and staff for the commitment and hard work. Together we will achieve yet more for this unique community.
The Town and Port of Faversham 2020 looks very positive.
The Mayor Faversham
Cllr Mrs Alison Reynolds BEM