Festive duties on song

Catherine and I had a fantastic run up to Christmas attending many events, writes Knaresborough Mayor David Goode. We have never sung as many carols as we did this Christmas. It was a great pleasure for us both to join with so many children and older family members to celebrate the many facets of the holiday season.

The month started with an invitation to St John’s to view the magical display of Christmas Trees in the church. In the end it took two visits to fully appreciate the many creatively decorated trees on display. At the same time the very successful Christmas Market was taking place. It was great to see so many visitors to our town enjoying Knaresborough’s Christmas preparations. In addition to enjoying all the Market had to offer we also had an invite to join residents, staff and visitors at the Manor House Christmas fair. Great entertainment but too many wonderful cakes to sample.

Mid-week we joined the Rainbows, Brownies, Guides and Rangers for their special Nativity “The Little Christmas Tree” at St John’s. Some great acting and an opportunity to join in some very enthusiastic carol singing.

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This busy week was completed by the opportunity not only to represent Knaresborough but also have the honour to represent the Mayor of Harrogate, Anne Jones at a Barbershop concert at Ashville College where we experienced a very entertaining evening of singing by the internationally renowned ladies “The White Rosettes” from Leeds and the 55 strong male group from the Vale of York “Spirit of Harmony”.

The following weekend was again busy. Friday night was the first of a number of visits to Aspin Park Academy Christmas Fair. Great to see so many parents and kids supporting this fund-raising event.

Cath and I attended the Christmas Concert at the Harrogate Convention Centre put on by Harrogate Symphony Orchestra, Harrogate Choral Society and over 300 children from Local Primary Schools in front of a very appreciative audience. The quality of the performance could only have been achieved through a lot of hard work put in by the children and their teachers. Great job.

The weekend was completed by a visit to Skipton at the invite of the Mayor of Skipton, Coun Andrew Rankine for their Civic Carol Service. By this point my singing voice was showing signs of overuse so I was the one rumbling in the background.

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Yet more singing when we attended Aspin Park Academy “Carols Round the Christmas Tree”. Never seen the main hall so full of family members and carers. Some great performances by choirs from various age groups and performances of string, wind and keyboard instruments. It was a great honour to be part of an event that further highlights how Christmas is still a very special time for families. A great evening was enjoyed by all.

My run up to Christmas was completed by joining the children of Aspin School for their Christmas lunch. Some fantastic conversation over lunch on their plans for the holidays and what presents they were hoping to receive. The range of Christmas Jumpers being worn was very colourful.

The year was brought to an end by the opportunity to join Coun Andrew Willoughby to help referee the proceedings for the Knaresborough Boxing Day “Tug of War” between the Half Moon and Mother Shipton’s pubs. Andrew and I split duties with me refereeing the ladies’ event and Andrew the men’s. Great to see this event still well supported.

Catherine and I would like to thank all the different groups who have invited us to share in their programme of activities through 2017 and wish everyone an enjoyable and rewarding 2018.