Mayor’s Report September 2015
Farewell to Victoria – Sunday 6th September
Victoria had been a curate in training at All Hallows in Whitchurch for the ministry for the last three years. She had made a great impact on many folks in the town and beyond and was a great people person who did a lot of visiting of local folks at home and in hospital. She had a very real gift of a listening ear and was much loved in the community. This was Victoria’s last service at Whitchurch when she was presented with gifts and good wishes from the church and through Sandra and me, the community at the Methodist Church and the town. Victoria is to be Vicar of North Baddesley church – their gain is our loss.
Churches Together in Whitchurch – Sunday 6th September
A beautiful warm sunny afternoon, sat in the grounds of the Silk Mill, the Salvation Army Band singing songs of praise – the perfect Sunday afternoon for Sandra and me. The annual event arranged and supported by churches in Whitchurch was this year led by the Baptist minister Rev Andy Fitchett. Following the event some folks went up to support the Silk Mill tea shop while the band, the Mayoress and I went to Seeviours Court to play hymns on request by the residents there and sing with them. We spent a little time talking with the residents which is always a pleasure and a place we are always made to feel most welcome.
Farewell to Dr Boucher – Friday 11th September
We were so pleased that Dr Barbour decided to organise a leaving get together which was open to all those in the community who wished to say ’farewell’ to Whitchurch doctors’ practice partner, Dr Audrey Boucher. Dr Boucher had gone well beyond the duties of a doctor and had, through her care, kindness and understanding become more like a friend to many.
We arrived at the Gill Nethercott Community Centre and had to queue to get in, such was the number of local folks there to show their appreciation for what she had meant to so many. Partner in the practice Dr Paul Barbour was able to present Dr Boucher with a cheque for over £2000 which represented monies donated at the surgery. Sandra and I presented her with a basket of flowers and a framed certificate of appreciation on behalf of the people of Whitchurch and the surrounding villages and hamlets. During my short speech I suggested that the 60 or so people present should form an orderly queue to enable Dr Boucher to attend to her largest surgery ever before her retirement. This was, although a rather sad occasion at the loss of a wonderful doctor, both a celebration and a thank you which for the Mayoress and myself has been a highlight of our engagements on behalf of Whitchurch Folk.
Whitchurch Warriors – Friday 11th September
The newly formed Whitchurch Warriors netball team invited us along for a photo shoot to help promote the formation of their team. Following the photographs we stayed to witness the enthusiasm and skills as they practised and then played netball in the sports hall at Testbourne.
They explained that at their first match a couple of days earlier all they wanted was to score one goal – they scored 20! We enjoyed our evening with them and wished them every success. If joy, happiness, excitement and a will to succeed are any measures of future success I am sure we will be hearing more from them in the circles of netball in the not too distant future.
Country Show – Sunday 20th September
The sun shone brightly as we left the Methodist Church following morning worship and we sensed that the weather was going to be just right for the afternoon. Invited by the WI to do some judging at the Gill Nethercott Community Centre we were welcomed and shown around the various entries and after careful perusal of the exhibits we finally declared Best in Show. The Show was very professionally organised by the very enthusiastic ladies of the Whitchurch WI, well done ladies. On to the Silk Mill, where the various stalls were laid out at what is now the annual Country Show at the Silk Mill. Of the large variety of stalls laid out around the Mill one could buy or win anything from beer to honey and engage in boat building and sailing on the river, or just relax with a Pimms and listen to the wide range of musicians ‘on stage’ on the beautiful south facing lawns. What was expected to be an hour judging for the WI turned out to be 4 hours meeting, greeting and talking with locals and visitors alike. The film crew present made an interesting addition to the whole afternoon – but that’s another story!