In her 2017 Christmas message, the Lord Mayor of Canterbury, Cllr Rosemary Doyle, has thanked everyone who works so hard for the benefit of the district.
The full text of her message reads as follows:
Canterbury is the perfect place to celebrate Christmas. The lights make the bustling streets look wonderfully festive and the crib at the cathedral reminds us all of the true meaning of Christmas.
At the start of December, I was joined by other councillors and a band of volunteers in the High Street collecting for the Lord Mayor of Canterbury’s Christmas Gift Fund. The music organ always puts us in good spirits as do the very generous donations given to us by passersby. I am so grateful to them all. The fund provides parcels of festive goodies for those who are elderly, lonely or in need and I have been distributing them around my ward for 18 years so I know how much they are appreciated.
Stagecoach has entered into the spirit of Christmas and have put my picture on the back of one of their buses to publicise the open-air carol concert in aid of the gift fund on Christmas Eve. I have to confess to never having harboured an ambition to look like the back of a bus, but now I consider it an honour.
Another bus will have pride of place on Christmas Eve in Rose Square for the concert which is led by the Archbishop of Canterbury and is conducted by the legendary Grenville Hancox. For many this tradition signals the start of the real Christmas celebrations and is something I am greatly looking forward to. Do come along with your best singing voice.
Naturally at this time of year, the spotlight falls on giving and those who put the needs of others above their own. The privilege of being Lord Mayor of Canterbury is meeting so many people from all walks of life who give up their own precious time to volunteer for all sorts of organisations. They are the district’s unsung heroes and one of the highlights of the year so far was presenting the Lord Mayor’s Awards to three people whose goodwill and willingness to help make a difference. It was both humbling and inspiring and I send them all my heartfelt best wishes.
The same can be said for all of those who sacrificed their lives while serving their country. I was so proud to lead the city’s tributes to the fallen on Remembrance Sunday.
That sense of pride was also evident when we celebrated the Kentish Gazette’s 300th birthday in October and I read a lesson at the cathedral service. It speaks to the enormous wealth of history the district can boast and the sense of community in the district that others can only envy.
I want to thank everyone who works so hard for the benefit of the wonderful place we live and work in. I hope you all have a happy Christmas and I wish you a prosperous new year.
Cllr Rosemary Doyle, Lord Mayor of Canterbury