IT was all change once again in Whitnash when town mayor Simon Button handed over the chains of office to Coun Tony Heath.
The event was attended by various mayors, deputy mayors and dignitaries from surrounding towns, townspeople, and Whitnash town councillors.
Outgoing mayor Coun Button said: “It gave me great pleasure to hand over the mayoral chain to Coun Tony Heath as the new Mayor of Whitnash, and I wish both him and his deputy, CounTerry Shepherd, all the very best for the forthcoming year.
“Kate, Matthew and I have had a wonderful year, and have been privileged to represent Whitnash in many different ways. It has all gone so quickly. It has been an honour to promote our little town and it has filled us all with pride. We have attended many interesting and different events during the year, and met some wonderful people on our way.”
Coun Button presented cheques from his fundraising to representatives of his chosen charities, Rufus’ Friends Fund and the Encephalitis Society, totalling £14,000 – a record for Whitnash.
He also paid tribute to retiring community hall caretaker Josie DiLuciano, who is stepping down after ten years in the job, and to long standing Whitnash councillor Bernard Kirton, who this year stepped down as county councillor for the town after 36 years. Coun Button praised Coun Kirton’s dedication, service, and commitment to the town, which now totals over 50 years.
Coun Button said “Bernard has been a very active councillor, who has been involved at every level.
“Over his long years of service, he has intervened in problems presented to him by hundreds of residents, always fighting for their rights. He has never been afraid to stand up and say what he believed in and what he thought was best for Whitnash.
“Hence his nickname “The Whitnash Rottweiler”. Bernard is one of a kind and will not be easily replaced. His legacy will live on forever.”
On his inauguration as the new mayor CounHeath thanked Coun Button for all his work over the last year.
He said “I will continue with the work carried out by Simon towards making Whitnash a better and safer place to live, and will push to make sure the Community Hub gets off the ground as soon as possible, to replace the existing Community Centre.”
Coun Heath has chosen as the charities he will fundraise for throughout his mayoral year, SW-Heart and the Whitnash Charitable Trust.
*LEE Ellard is the new mayor of Southam.
Coun Ellard will be raising funds for Acorns Childrens Hospice and the Alzheimer’s Society during her mayoral year.
In addition to serving on the town council, she is also a member of several local volunteer groups including Southam Christmas Lights and Southam First.
She will be supported in her role by her consort husband Clive.
Coun Mark Connors will serve as deputy mayor and Jackie Connors will serve as his consort.