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The Mayor of Knaresborough’s column with Coun David Goode

One of the many medal presentations at the Special Olympics Swimming Gala.
One of the many medal presentations at the Special Olympics Swimming Gala.

The month started with a trip to Skipton in support of the Mayor of Skipton’s, Cllr Andrew Rankine, charity fund raiser, “An Evening with Simon Entwistle”.

Simon tells some great ghost stories from across our region.

This was followed by Remembrance Day which was a very poignant occasion as we remembered brave men and women for their courage, sacrifice and their devotion to ideals of freedom and peace for all.

Every year the number of people attending the service and two minute silence at the Cenotaph increases, which I hope indicates we share similar values with former generations as we live our lives in a very troubled world.

I had a great afternoon presenting awards to participants along with the Mayor of Harrogate, Anne Jones and volunteers from Knaresborough Lions at the Special Olympics Yorkshire and Humberside Regional Swimming Gala.

The event was great fun for all with many swimmers improving their own personal best times.

Later in the month Catherine and I attended the Oakleaf Service at Ripon Cathedral. This service is organised by North Yorkshire Police in conjunction with Ripon Cathedral primarily for relatives and friends of those killed in road traffic accidents on North Yorkshire’s roads over the past 12 months.

This was a very stark reminder that we all need to work to make our roads safer for all.

A very enjoyable night was at the Oxfam Ceilidh. It had been many years since we had done some country dancing, great fun even if the legs were suffering in the morning. Money raised went to the Disasters Emergency Committee Appeal raising funds to support the Rohingya refugees driven out of Myanmar.

As part of Knaresborough’s Bright Friday celebrations, I was asked to switch on the Christmas tree lights. The evening started with us joining a lantern procession from the Castle top to the Market Square.

Clearly many children had been hard at work making their lanterns. It was a little overwhelming to find the Market Square full for the event.

It is my perception that every year the numbers of people attending key annual events in the Knaresborough calendar is increasing. This is great to see.

Thank you all for the support you offer to these events and the contributions you make to fund raising for local charities.

The Month came to an end with the Mayoress and I joining pupils from Forest School, members of Harrogate Borough Council’s Parks department and Andrew and Christine Willoughby representing Knaresborough in Bloom to plant 5,000 crocuses in the grounds of Knaresborough House. This will create a fantastic display in Spring.

The month finished with an invitation to attend a performance of the Messiah at Holy Trinity Church.

The performance of soloists, musicians and singers from local choirs, who had a very limited time to rehearse together, did a fantastic job. To sit in front of the massed ranks of singers was an experience not to be forgotten. Funds raised at this event was in support of The Harrogate Easier

Living Project who support the older, vulnerable people or those living with disability to remain living independently in their own homes across the district.

Cath and I would like to wish you all a very enjoyable Christmas and a great New Year.