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Dale - thank you.
After two very enjoyable years as deputy mayor, I fully understand that the hard work starts today.
Residents have commented favourably on the wonderful facilities we have in Sandhurst including our immaculate Memorial Park and Shepherd Meadows. This have been recognised by the award of the Green Flag for ten years in succession - each year the bar is raised so it is a credit to Chris Smith and our ground staff that their hard work is recognised.
Whilst it is easy for councillors to say that this is a great place to live and work, our residents are the litmus paper in judging our facilities. Residents throughout the borough were invited to complete a residents questionnaire at the end of last year. A 11% return resulted – this is a high figure where the normal return is 3% - 5%. For those suffering from insomnia, the 62 page report is available on the Borough Website. Most encouraging is the Sandhurst resident satisfaction with our services - these ranged from 90% to 94%. In addition as Dale mentioned at our recent AGM, over 30% of Sandhurst residents carry our voluntary work. When asked to rate our facilities, Sandhurst residents identified:
Don’t just take my word for it – see last month’s Bracknell Standard which quoted:
‘Satisfaction was highest in Sandhurst and Crowthorne’.
You can be assured of my commitment and dedication in upholding the position as mayor of Sandhurst.
Today marks the end of a memorable two years for you and Gill.
Those who participate in our Full Council Meetings will be aware of the frequency and breadth of the visits you undertake as Mayor. It will not surprise you that in the last year, you have undertaken 73 engagements. It is a reflection of your commitment that as deputy mayor I have only filled the gaps infrequently. Pauline and Roy will need to bear this in mind!
Dale - this year you chose as your theme
Inspire a generation
This was appropriate as we had the:
Queen’s Jubilee celebrations
Not forgetting the memorable event last Tuesday when we were honoured by the visit by His Royal Highness the Duke of Edinburgh.
Sandhurst residents can be justifiably proud that we have been visited by royalty - this is attributable to you.
Noticeable has been how you have empathy scanning all age groups - whether visiting a playschool or engaging with the older residents at our Day Centre adjacent to our Council Offices.
You have over the last two years raised the bar - I am aware from the names recorded on the board behind us of the illustrious company in which I find myself.
Although daunted, I would like to assure my fellow councillors, council staff and our residents what I will uphold the high standards expected of this role - remembering our Mission statement which is
‘TO BE THE BEST WE CAN BE’
Can I again reiterate my heartfelt thanks to Dale and Gill for the sterling work they have undertaken over the last 24 months.