Barry Ayres is new Mayor of West Norfolk
20:50 08 May 2014
Archant © 2014
Barry Ayres was officially made Mayor of West Norfolk this evening at a ceremony steeped with tradition at King’s Lynn’s medieval Town Hall.
As Mr Ayres took over the red robe and gold chain from Elizabeth Watson, he said he would aim to bring the community closer, promote king’s Lynn’s waterfront and support the voluntary sector during his term in office.
Mr Ayres, 67, said: “This is a tremendous honour, I am humbled and really surprised. King’s Lynn is a diverse society so one of my targets is social cohesion in the borough.
“Another focus is the waterfront and to push the tourism, for King’s Lynn has a wonderful historic past, so I am keen to see it done, to help make it alive and a vibrant area. I shall do my best to serve the people of this borough in a fitting and proper manner.”
Mr Ayres also spoke of how he and his wife Christine, now Mayoress, will be supporting the Prince’s Trust and Lynnsport’s Kandoo Club which gives youngsters with all types of disabilities the opportunity to take part in regular sports activities and get fit.
Mr Ayres also thanked his wife for being “ my rock” and giving him advice.
A retired teacher, he has been a parish councillor in Tilney St Lawrence for 17 years and has chaired the parish council for the last 14 years.
Outgoing Mayor Elizabeth Watson said tearfully: “I promised myself I wouldn’t cry but I have. It has been a enormous privilege. Meeting all the children at different schools made my heart sing.
“I wish Mr Ayres all the best in his new role and I know he will be a great ambassador for us all.”
Mr Ayres also passed his previous gold chain to his new deputy Mayor, Colin Manning. Retired police officer Mr Manning and his wife Julie, now deputy Mayoress said that they look forward to supporting the new Mayor and Mayoress for the year ahead.