Thursday, 30 March 2017

My Visiter Column this week

I have had the pleasure of showing several groups around our Town Halls. First up were the students from Range High School Formby who came with their visitors from Germany. They were followed by the pupils from Waterloo Primary School. Their party was drawn from the School Council, Eco champions and anti-bullying leads. I always find that primary school youngsters are the most inquisitive. They ask the questions that come into their head. This makes for a much more interesting and challenging time.

On Thursday evening I hosted the first civic reception for LGBT people in Bootle Town Hall. Members of Embrace- which is a network for all Lesbian, Gay or Bisexual (LGB) people who live, work or socialise in Sefton-attended including their Co-Chairs Dr Mike Homfray and Rach O’Brien. They were joined by Queer Notions a voluntary group that offers support, advice and information on mental health matters. I was particularly keen to host this reception as it marks an important stage in a journey from exclusion to full acceptance. The Town Hall is a venue for marriages and across England and Wales, we have seen over 5000 same-sex weddings celebrated since the passing of the Equal Marriage Legislation. Early this year I was privileged to open the General Assembly of the United Reform Church (URC) when they became the first mainstream Christian church in the UK to empower its local churches to conduct same-sex marriages.

On Friday morning I was back in Bootle Town Hall to meet two school students who had won the competition to design a mascot for the Sefton Coast. The two winners were Lydia Orvice Gibson who attends St Oswald’s Primary School and Saskia Williams a student at Maghull High School. Their designs will be used on a range of promotional material-both printed and digital-to promote 2017 as the year of Sefton’s Coast. I will put both designs on the Mayoral Blog 

This weekend I shall be with the Formby Choral Society at the Pheromonic Hall in Liverpool when they will performing Mendelssohn's wonderful oratorio, Elijah - with a combined choir of something like 275 singers, 4 superb soloists and a full professional orchestra. 

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