MAYOR’S MOMENT: Delighted to support this year’s charity

Billy Blanchard-Cooper. Picture: Scott Ramsey
Billy Blanchard-Cooper. Picture: Scott Ramsey

With the start of the week seeing copious amounts of rain and many of the town’s drains being unable to cope with such a deluge in a short amount of time, I would like to commend those who took to helping neighbours and sending messages on Facebook with offers of help to those who might need it.

There were blocked drains that I have reported that until then I had not noticed as blocked and would suggest that if you have also noticed some to report them. You can easily report online at

Thankfully, despite the weather on Wednesday, the Friends of Mewsbrook Park of which I am chairman were still able to continue with the PlayRangers event that was planned.

It was great to see many children enjoying the free event which included inflatables to climb, roll and have fun on, a wood working area and painting and arts area. Even with a bit of very light rain it was good to see this was not going to stop people coming out to join in with the fun. The next PlayRangers event is Thursday, July 26 from 11am to 1pm and as always is completely free, open to children aged five to 11 who must be accompanied by an adult.

Last week I said how I have been busily working away on organising fundraisers for the year ahead and I have lots planned but must send out thanks to the many family and friends who have already had their arms twisted to help once again.

Choosing a charity or organisation to support is harder than it sounds as you want to make sure it’s the right one and will benefit as many people as possible.

Personally, I am passionate that money raised in Littlehampton stays in Littlehampton and benefits Littlehampton people. So this year I am delighted to be raising money for the Arun Youth Projects which is setting up a Littlehampton creative arts and social clubs bursary to complement their sports bursary.

The bursaries help young people who may need financial support to be able to take part and get involved with these groups. The idea came about after service manager Ben Young and Jon Jolly, Arun Church business manager, spoke so passionately at the last town meeting, speaking out for the majority of young people in the town centre following the spate of antisocial behaviour our town received earlier this year.

I see this as an opportunity to keep raising awareness of the different groups the town has and to encourage young people to get involved. I know and understand that sometimes finding the money to be able to take part in these things is hard, and so I want to see this as a community fund made by the people for the people.

When speaking with Ben Young, he said: “This is an exciting opportunity for Arun Youth Projects to work together with the mayor to best support young people interested in creative arts or social clubs. The bursary will enable Arun Youth Projects to positively respond to the needs of local young people by offering sums of money to develop their interests and get involved in positive opportunities.

“The bursary will be accessible to young people needing financial support in performing arts, visual art and architecture or to pay for the costs associated with joining a social club such as Scouts or Girlguiding. We look forward to working with the mayor and other local organisations to best support local young people.”

As you know, I had not planned on being mayor again this year and so did not have anything planned and my cupboard of raffle prizes and things for tombolas is extremely depleted. If you think that you are able to help in any way I would be extremely grateful.

I am keen to try and get the town behind this project and if any businesses or organisations would like to hold a fundraiser to help support me in this I would love to hear from you.

My diary seems to be filling up even quicker than last year and I love it, I really do want to be kept as busy as possible and would love you all to get in touch and invite me to your various events.

To contact please email the office on or call 01903 732063.


Benefit from an ongoing discount on your Littlehampton Gazette by joining our voucher membership scheme. Once you’ve subscribed we’ll send you dated vouchers which can be exchanged for your paper at any news outlet. To save money on your Littlehampton Gazette simply click here.