Council News

New Mayor of Hedon – need to “regain order and dignity” of the Council

667th Mayor and Mayoress Cllr John Dennis and Jennifer Dennis

667th Mayor Cllr John Dennis and Mayoress Jennifer Dennis

HEDON’S NEW MAYOR was appointed at the Hedon Town Council meeting last night as Councillor John Dennis was elected Chairman making him the 667th Mayor of Hedon, his wife Jennifer Dennis is the new Mayoress.

Gone last night was the special ‘Mayor Making’ ceremony that normally precedes the appointment of the new mayor, gone also was the pomp and pageantry that traditionally marks this occasion. Instead, a plain-clothed Sergeant of the Mace Dave Young invested the new Mayor and Mayoress with their chains of office in the presence of other councillors and in front of the general public assembled at the Town Hall council chamber.

For all its break with tradition, it was a dignified act that was greeted with enthusiasm and loud applause by other councillors present, albeit that enthusiasm was not shared by most of the 12 members of the public present.

The new Mayor in a short speech set out his intention to regain the dignity and order of the council and to reassure residents that the council was back on track.

Hedon Mayor, Councillor Dennis said in his speech: “So, here I am, very, very proud to be the 667th Mayor of Hedon, it was not part of the plan, but I relish the challenge.

“Now that the legalities are complied with, the Hedon Town Council has to get back to business. I hope we can put the problems of recent months behind us and regain the order and dignity which this ancient body has enjoyed over its 850 years existence.

“We need to reassure our residents that this is not, as some have claimed, a council in crisis, anything but.”

The Mayor confirmed that an election has been called for by residents, to fill the two vacancies on Hedon Town Council left by the resignations of Ann Suggit and Jim Lindop. If contested; if there are at least three candidates, then the election will take place in the New Year.

Amongst the members of the public watching the proceedings was Ann Suggit, Jim and Sue Lindop. At the end of the meeting, it was notable that the new Mayor, after receiving the congratulations of his colleagues on the council, shared a handshake with the previous Mayor Jim Lindop.

Whilst the issues that have divided some members of the council with those that resigned are far from resolved, the new Mayor has very clearly set out to restore harmony on the council and to restore the confidence of local people in that body.

The full text of the new Mayor’s speech following his appointment last night:

Cllr John Dennis smallThank you colleagues for your support over the past 2 difficult weeks, and for your vote this evening.

Little did I think only a fortnight ago when relaxing on my holiday sunbed that events would develop so drastically and rapidly, with the unexpected resignation of our previous Mayor happening on the very evening of my return.

So, here I am, very, very proud to be the 667th Mayor of Hedon, it was not part of the plan, but I relish the challenge.

Now that the legalities are complied with, the Hedon Town Council has to get back to business. I hope we can put the problems of recent months behind us and regain the order and dignity which this ancient body has enjoyed over its 850 years existence.

We need to reassure our residents that this is not, as some have claimed, a council in crisis, anything but.

People need only to come down to the town centre tomorrow evening to the Christmas Lights Switch-on event to see for themselves just how much expertise and effort of both councilllors and town hall staff, has gone into presenting the town’s event of the year. Maybe as many as 3000 residents and visitors will be out enjoying themselves, and the children of the town will all have smiling faces.

Is it a council in crisis that can procure £100,000 of funds for the older children to enjoy a brand new, state of the art skate park, of which building has commenced this week. And no, for the cynics, it isn’t Hedon residents’ money, it comes as commuted funds paid by the builders of the Holderness Grange retirement village, and other developers.

The council has involved the local kids in the decision making, for their skate park and they are getting just what they wanted. The teenagers of our town are looking forward to using and enjoying these facilities in the new year and for many years to come. A council in crisis, I think not.

I know other members feel the same about this, and the job is now to move forward with all of the other projects in the months ahead.

We can look forward to 2 new members joining the Council in the new year, and I really hope they will come to this table with enthusiasm, with new ideas, and with a desire to make a difference. My commitment, as the interim Mayor for the next six months is to continue working with all councillors and staff to put the council back on track, to undertake as many civic functions as my already busy diary will allow, and to restore the confidence of local residents in the Hedon Town Council.

I’m going to need your help in achieving these aims, we must all work together in harmony, and I know you will play your part.

12 replies »

  1. I feel I must say that two of the comments congratulating John and Jenny are sent from two people who were the authors of distressing letters sent to Sue and I, which ultimately resulted in our resignation after 6 months and 8 letters. One of these people did apologise for his letter and the erroneous information he was given by councillors, but it was still sent and cause distress.

  2. It was noticeable as commented that no one present apart from councillors applauded. Has the two councillors who appear on the youtube (2003 views) video been asked to resign or even apologise, i.e. the one shouting and especially the one who punched the air in triumph when Ann Suggit resigned, does the council condone this shocking behaviour, as they have done in the past? Congratulation to John Dennis but recent disgraceful behavior cannot and should not be just swept under the carpet

  3. Just like to say a big THANK YOU to everyone who turned out on Friday for the ‘switch-on’; it was the biggest and best one – ever!
    Particular thanks go to all the stallholders/shops/caterers (commercial and charity – hope you all did some good business) to Joanna, Jo and Sandy our Town Hall staff, to Des and the outside works team, to the Cadets, the Choir, the Lions, Rob and Amy of KCFM Radio, the PA man Rich, to the Red Cross, to Vivergo for paying for, and the handlers for bringing the reindeer and everyone who helped put on such a great show.
    Not forgetting of course the children for their invaluable help in counting down to Christmas – without them there would be no lights!
    And of course to Father Christmas who turned up as always, even though it is a busy time for him!.
    Also to all those nice people around the town who spoke to us on the night, and have been to speak to Jenny and me since, with words of encouragement regarding our new job!
    Not forgetting Sarah Rommell and John Groome for their supporting comments (see below) and even Neil Shillito for his very kind words too – a nice gesture Neil, bearing in mind your recent less than flattering comments on the Blog !!
    Hope we all have a Very Merry Christmas, and a Happy, Healthy and Prosperous 2014

    John and Jennifer Dennis – 667th Mayor and Mayoress of Hedon

  4. Congratulations to John and his wife on there appointments, I dont believe this is the outcome the public wanted , but im pleased to see the the chains in safe hands and wish both John and his good lady the very best for the future.

  5. Congratulations to John & Jenny on being installed as the 667th Mayor and Mayoress of the Historic Town of Hedon & the Most Senior Town Mayor in Yorkshire. I know you will lead the Council successfully away from the recent problems and hope you enjoy the remainder of the year.

  6. Congratulations to John and Jenny on being installed as our Mayor and Mayoress for the remainder of this civic year. I cannot think of a better choice. May God bless them both in the coming months as they lead and represent the ancient town of Hedon.

Leave a comment. You need to leave your FULL NAME.