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The role of the Town Mayor
The Mayor is expected to attend all Council and Committee meetings. The Town Mayor automatically become a trustee of Okehampton United Charities, Okehampton Educational Foundation, Simmons Homes, and The Charities of Holditch & Others. On appointment the Mayor becomes the President of Cancer Research (Okehampton Branch) and President of the Okehampton Friendly Circle. The Mayor is an honorary member of the Okehampton Rotary Club during his term of office.
For those wishing to have the attendance of the Mayor at any function then please contact the Town Hall.
Councillor Jan Goffey, Mayor of Okehampton 2017/18
Councillor Goffey's End of Mayoral Year Address at the Mayor Choosing Ceremony -
10 May 2017
Some Mayoral years are like a duck pond, the water is smooth and calm and the year progresses with nary a hitch nor a blip to mar the smooth course of time from May to May. My year has been somewhat akin to a tsunami.
The battle of the hospital beds has involved a lot of work, many meetings here and in Exeter, public holidays like Christmas merely meant I could concentrate on writing a formal response to the CCG's public consultation. I also wrote a response to the Peninsula Rail report and quite honestly, this is the bit of the job I do enjoy. I have worked with some amazing people this year, Elizabeth Passmore, Alison Duckers, Chris Bligh and Richard Proctor have helped me and this town enormously and I want to publicly acknowledge their support.
We still have a fight on our hands to keep our hospital despite Resolution 9 recognising the rurality of Okehampton and the 30 odd thousand people within a fifteen mile radius.
The good news of the trial daily rail service means we have to put pressure on our County Councillors, Kevin Ball, James McInnes and Andrew Leadbetter to move quickly to build the long-awaited Parkway Station up on the industrial estate to provide parking for commuters into Exeter for whom the original station, marvellous as it is for incoming tourists and the Sunday Rover, would be inadequate for the numbers we anticipate using the rail service on a daily basis (not the parking but the 'getting there'!) I ask you to write to any DCC Councillor that you know and all MPs that cover this rural hinterland, to help us. A second station at Cranbrook cannot be allowed to take precedence!
We have the newly-formed triumvirate of West Devon, South Hams and Plymouth whose Joint Local Plan treats Okehampton and the Hamlets as one place which will possibly bring its own difficulties as we try to work with the Hamlets for the best solution for both our communities. Life was so much easier in the old Okehampton Borough days!
So we face both old and new challenges this coming year and as more and more gets devolved onto the Town with fewer and fewer resources, we need to work together as a community to be strong and resilient. Okehampton is a hub for this large rural area and we need the infrastructure and the services to help not only this town but all the little villages and hamlets around us to ensure their survival and ours.
This is the challenge for this coming year and I know it will be difficult and I know too many of these challenges have been faced by my predecessors. We may not have the power but we do have the will and determination as a Council to carry on battling the powers above us and eventually we will succeed.
Some of that success may well be due to the work done already by these members of our community and I would like the following people to come forward for their Mayor's Award for service to the community.
Richard Proctor for his dedication and sustained work on the Sunday Rover and OkeRail.
Alison Duckers for her commitment and work towards the Okehampton and Hamlets Local Neighbourhood Plan.
Steve Bolt and Karen Penna for their work for the Carnival.
Jackie and Kirsty Reynolds for their Christmas Dinner for the solitary and elderly on their own on Christmas Day.
I would also like to thank my Cadet, Corporal Hayleigh Shaw for her attendance at civic occasions and her smart appearance and precision marching, please accept your award.
I welcome my new cadet from ATC, Cadet Charlie Thompson and present the brassard.
Thank you everyone.
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