December 21 2014 Latest news:
Sunday, May 18, 2014
Southwold has welcomed its new mayor with a civic service and parade through the town held in glorious sunshine.
This afternoon saw Elizabeth Ann Betts, known as Ann, officially installed as the civic leader of the town for the next 12 months.
Pomp and pageantry were the order of the afternoon as a traditional procession made its way from the town hall at 1.45pm to St Edmunds Church for a civic service in which Miss Betts was officially installed as the replacement for the outgoing mayor Simon Tobin.
Townsfolk, shoppers and holiday makers looked on as the procession was led by the Southwold and Reydon Corps of Drums through the town.
The procession involved town councillors and local groups and organisations from the town, such as cubs, scouts, the RNLI lifeboat crew, coastguard and police.
There were also 30 mayors and dignitaries from other towns and communities, including Waveney District Council chairman Peter Collecott, taking part in the procession.
Once at St Edmunds Church, special prayers were said for the town’s new mayor during the service held by the Rev Simon Pitcher, of the Sole Bay Ministry Team.
The service saw hymns selected by Miss Betts and, for the first time for the traditional event, a performance by the Southwold and Reydon Corps of Drums.
After the service the Southwold and Reydon Corps of Drums led the parade back to the Market Place via the seafront. At the end of procession the band performed a general salute.
Miss Betts said: “It was a good civic occasion. There was good turn out.”
She had previously been mayor of the town nine years ago, and has sat on Southwold Town Council for 16 years.
Born and bred in Southwold, she has chosen her mayor’s charities for the next year, the Sole Bay Care Fund, and the Alfred Corry museum.
Before yesterday’s ceremony Mr Tobin said it had been an honour to serve as mayor for the last year and that his successor should have a excellent year ahead.