Mayor's Christmas Message 2018
On behalf of the Town Council, I would like to wish everyone a very happy Christmas and prosperous New Year.
It has once again been an honour to serve you as Town Mayor during 2018. We have achieved a great deal over the last 12 months by careful budgeting, working together with partners and the local community.
The new long stay car park in Long Street is the biggest ever project undertaken by the Town Council. Having successfully gained planning permission for our car park, the demolition of Reliance House took place during a very hot July. At the current time groundworks are continuing, with the construction taking place early in the new year. The project is scheduled to be completed in February 2019.
2018 saw many events and activities that helped to promote our town. I have represented the town at many of these events, where I have been made most welcome and thank you to those who invited me.
February saw a cold/wet annual pancake race take place and the launch of the new town brochure aimed to encourage tourists to visit Dursley. In the spring/summer the Town Council carried out refurbishment of the town centre street furniture, helping The Dursley in Bloom team once again retain a Gold award in the Heart of England in Bloom competition. In April a new plaque to commemorate RA Listers was unveiled in Long Street and in May we unveiled a new memorial bench in Twinberrow Wood for Cllr Brian Marsh who passed away in November 2016. Over the summer period the Cotswold Hares visited Dursley for the first time adding a touch of vibrant colour across the town.
The annual Summer Festival, Carnival Dursley, Guy Fawkes Night Fireworks and a bigger than ever Walking Festival all encouraged visitors to come to Dursley. On 19th May 2018 the first Dursley street party held under the town hall since 1977 celebrated the Royal Wedding of Prince Harry to Megan Markle.
In all of this, what has stood out has been the hard work of all the volunteers, who make all of the events and activities in our town possible. We should be proud of what they do.
The Town Council have completed other projects in 2018, including the introduction of a CCTV system in the town centre and the War Memorial Recreation Ground and new railings in Castle Street.
A significant achievement was successful gained in November when following a referendum of Dursley residents over 85% of those who voted approved the draft Future Dursley Neighbourhood Development Plan (NDP). This plan took over four years to produce and I would very much like to thank the volunteers, staff and fellow councillors who worked so hard to produce this important document which will be used in the planning process for many years to come. The Town Council continue to be involved in planning matters and are currently drafting our comments on Stroud District Council's Emerging Local Plan consultation.
The lead up to Christmas can be a very busy time with school activities, carol services, church services and of course, shopping. The festive season began with a very well attended Christmas Light Switch On evening on the 30th November. It was great to see the town bustling on an evening with entertainment available for all ages.
Our achievements over the year would not have been possible without the combined effort and commitment of these dedicated volunteers, local organisations, traders, Elected Members and staff of the Town Council. I would like to personally thank the people and volunteers involved in these activities and projects and every member of the public for their support in making all of this possible.
Dursley is a great town and the amount of charity work that takes place on a daily basis by so many people who go about their tasks quietly and without self-reward, only seeking to make life a little better for those less fortunate than ourselves is amazing.
I know that Dursley can rise to the challenges it is given over the coming year, as this year's achievements have shown. I am very proud of this community.
Once again, I wish you a happy, healthy and safe Christmas and a prosperous 2019.
Posted: Thu, 20 Dec 2018 09:38 by John Kay