Mayor of Ripon’s diary with Coun Andrew Williams

'St Wilfrid' is led through the streets of Ripon at last year's procession. This year's event is on Saturday, August 4.
'St Wilfrid' is led through the streets of Ripon at last year's procession. This year's event is on Saturday, August 4.

Last week could only get better was my view as I stared at my diary sheet for the forthcoming week and found that last Monday I was to chair a discussion with an outside adviser and members of Ripon City Council on our committee structure.

Well I had no need to count sheep after that I can assure you and, all mocking apart, while Ripon City Council does need to review the way in which it conducts the business of the council there will be few who will read this column and wish they had their spent their Monday evening in the same manner!

Tuesday was far more entertaining, I had received an invitation to celebrate the 21st birthday of Borrage House. Residents and their families gathered in the lounge to listen to Ripon City Band entertain everyone with music from years gone by. Everyone seemed to enjoy the occasion even if the rain was pouring down again outside, one of the residents who I met was 104 and full of fun and life. It was a real pleasure to meet so many people who are clearly very well cared for by all the staff at Borrage House and they do a tremendous job in continuing to make life fun for all the residents.

Thursday was the quarterly meeting of Harrogate Borough Council and saw the granting of the Freedom of the Borough to Jonathon Wild former managing director of Bettys and Taylors of Harrogate.

On Sunday the annual civic service was held at the Leper Chapel and members of the council accompanied me with our guests the Mayor and Mayoress of Knaresbrough, Pateley Bridge and Richmond along with the chairman of North Yorkshire County Council.

The guests were really quite surprised to find a hidden gem on the outskirts of our city and we really ought to encourage more visitors to Ripon to look at the chapel, which is 900-years-old.

Monday was back to the town hall for the full council meeting and meetings of the committees. I had placed a number of items on the agendas including objecting to the road closure in Low Skellgate and asking Harrogate council to match-fund any contribution made by Ripon City Council in providing additional Christmas lighting. There were a number of other items that the council agreed to support including exploring the purchase of the Transco site for long-stay car parking.

This weekend Maurice, my Chaplain for the year along with his wife Joyce, celebrate their golden wedding anniversary and Pascar and I along with the members of Ripon City Council send our congratulations to them. I hope that they have a lovely weekend and have many more happy years ahead of them.

Much of the coming days will be spent putting the finishing touches to the St Wilfrid’s Procession which takes place a week on Saturday (August 4).

There is a full programme of events throughout the day, there will be a large screen showing coverage of the Olympics and a concert in the evening with Abba Revival – you guessed, an Abba tribute band – topping the bill before a fireworks finale at 11pm to celebrate another golden anniversary – that of the Procession itself. Now that the summer weather has finally arrived I am keeping my fingers crossed that it stays for the Procession.