PARISH AFFAIRS: Pleasures of being a councillor

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Egg on your face is something you’ll often find after that traditional Sunday morning breakfast, but in my case it happened after publication of my first column, so I must apologise to those offended, and correct the paragraph that says the council is made up of 17 sub-committees.

In fact there are only six “committees” chaired by councillors, and some councillors sit on the committees of the other organisations mentioned.

Having wiped the egg away, I’m now able to tell you about the more pleasurable part of being a councillor.

My council decided several years ago (proposed by a councillor in the year 2000) that a “Young Achievers Award” should be given to the most achieving young person in Crowland. These achievers are proposed and seconded by an adult.

The council meets to review the proposals, and award points. There are two groups, those aged up to 13, and those 13 to 18.

I couldn’t help feeling whilst reading the proposals, written by the proposing adult, that they were somewhat divorced from the young person being proposed, and that the winners only became winners if they had a supporting adult. Shouldn’t the award be for some kind of direct achievement by the young person? I’ll think that over.

That meeting was followed a few days later by the presentation of jubilee mugs. My council decided that all children living in the parish should receive one to mark this occasion – what a wonderful idea – tradition at its best. Every generation in recent times seems to have been bestowed with a mug, cup or similar commemorative device, and this one should be no different.

The task for councillors though was to take the mugs round to the schools and playgroups for personal presentation.

The playgroups’ young faces seemed quite unsure of these grey haired “old men”, and huddled close to their parents, but each in turn said thank you in their own special way, and I know will remember this occasion for many years.

The older boys and girls made us all lunch bags, so we could join the pupils at their jubilee party celebration, and I personally have to thank Aimee for mine. Its contents were typical party fare (we had to queue to fill it), two sandwiches of your choice, orange drink with a straw, fabulous jelly, and for those who couldn’t but help spill it, a face wipe.

Of real enjoyment was the playing of my generation’s music, the Beatles and ABBA etc, to which these young stars sang along. What a fabulous time, thank you headmistress.

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