MAYOR’S MOMENT: Community efforts

5th Littlehampton Scouts
5th Littlehampton Scouts

With a quiet start to my week as far as events were concerned, it was soon full throttle as the weekend hit.

Friday evening I attended the AGM of the 5th Littlehampton Scouts to present certificates and find out what they have been up to.

Billy's table at the Town Show

Billy's table at the Town Show

The members had been involved in the planting and maintenance of the rain garden in Maltravers Road and I was presenting certificates on behalf of the Civic Society to thank them for the support they have shown.

For anyone who hasn’t seen the rain garden, this is where a varied planting scheme has replaced the grass verge along the stretch outside the Nightingale Nursing Home, which has been installed to soak up surface water during heavy rainfall.

Rain gardens slow the flow of water, helping the drainage and reducing the risk of flooding and, in my opinion, as it has become more established looks far nicer too and is a credit to the Civic Society and all those involved.

Saturday I was up bright and early, ready for the Town Show and Family Fun Day and amazed to be greeted by such a sunny morning after such a downpour the night before.

A prodigious pumpkin in the hoticultural tent at the Town Show

A prodigious pumpkin in the hoticultural tent at the Town Show

I, like many of the other community groups, had booked a table in the community marque to raise awareness of our charities and do some fundraising.

With the help of my husband, I had arranged a big tombola with lots of prizes and we were also selling the ice-cream mayor biscuits made by Biggs Bakery and the mayor’s mugs and flowers made by the Flower Shop.

Both these businesses from Wick are also selling these items in their shops throughout my mayoral year to help raise funds.

We ,along with the many varied stall holders, had a very successful day and raised £172.70 towards my mayor’s charities.

A massive marrow in the hoticultural tent at the Town Show

A massive marrow in the hoticultural tent at the Town Show

I must thank the volunteers who manned the stall on my behalf so that I was free to do my mayoral duties on the day.

I officially opened the event at midday, by which time a large crowd had started to gather, the first arena event being a display by the Sussex Tornado’s Cheerleaders.

This young group demonstrated their energetic acrobatic and gymnastic abilities to an upbeat, modern music compilation.

This was soon followed by a well-attended dog show, at which I had the very difficult task of judging the four different classes.

Billy with the fastest runners from the Littlehampton 10k

Billy with the fastest runners from the Littlehampton 10k

Following this I took the opportunity to visit the various stalls in and around the community marquee which welcomed members from a wide range of local groups showing how much this town has to offer.

This included groups demonstrating their creative skills such as photography, needle craft and performance, community support and youth groups, and local attractions such as the museum and Look and Sea Centre.

There was also plenty for children to do with an art and crafts tent being run by the Arun Community Church, and various inflatable activities.

During this time many took the opportunity for a bite to eat from the various food stalls while enjoying the live performance from The Tribute Show.

I then had the pleasure of presenting the awards for the garden and allotments competition which I, along with others, had judged earlier in the year.

Next on my itinerary was to visit the members of the 50 Up Club, who had been running a bingo tent and raffle throughout the day, in order to make their prize draw.

As always with this group it was obvious that they had a lot of fun during the day and were enjoying my comical flair on raffle ticket drawing!

My final stop of the day was to visit the Town Show craft and horticultural marquee.

This competition tent featured an impressive range of entries in all classes demonstrating the townspeople’s skills in flowers, vegetables, baking, craft and home produce.

There were classes for all ages and all classes seemed to be well supported.

There were some lovely floral arrangements and some impressive giant vegetables including the biggest marrow and pumpkin I have ever seen.

It was a pleasure to present the many prizes and congratulate the successful winners.

I would like to thank the Town Show committee, the Littlehampton Town Council events team and all the many volunteers who took part in the day and made it such a success, which was clearly enjoyed by all who were attending, and I look forward to this event again next year.

Sunday morning saw me at our seafront to support the Chestnut Tree House 10K run.

This had attracted 4,500 entrants, and although not taking part myself I was there to start the race.

Competitors followed a route along the seafront, around Mewsbrook Park and back through the town before finishing back on the seafront.

Along with serious club runners there were also those taking part as a fun run, some taking the opportunity to take part in fancy dress, with one team entering as characters from Toy Story and one entry in a chimpanzee suit.

The runners were supported by musicians from Sussex Steel who were performing at Mewsbrook Park as the runners went past.

Fastest man to complete the course was Andrew McCaskill from Lancing with a time of 33.30 and the ladies competition was won by Sarah Kingston of Worthing who completed the course in a time of 38.36, and I was delighted to present them with their trophies.

The organisers were aiming to reach a target of £50,000 from this event – at the time of the run they estimated they were on £37,000 but were hopeful of reaching their goal.

Well done to all who took part in support of this worthy cause.


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