Agenda item - Declaration of office, Acceptance Speech and Vote of thanks to the retiring Mayor

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Agenda item

Declaration of office, Acceptance Speech and Vote of thanks to the retiring Mayor

The Mayor will make her formal declaration of acceptance of office and acceptance speech and  will call on Councillor Davis to move a vote of thanks to the retiring Mayor, Councillor Deane.


Councillor O’Quinn in the Chair


6.1           Councillor O’Quinn reconvened the meeting at 5.13pm and then made and signed her Declaration of Acceptance of Office.


6.2           The Mayor then thanked the Council for her appointment and gave the following speech;


“Ladies and gentlemen, Councillors, distinguished guests, family, and friends, I would like to say a heartfelt thank you to all of you for coming here today to see me inaugurated as Mayor.


I wish to thank Cllrs Bella Sankey and Gill Williams for nominating and supporting me and for their kind words, and to Cllrs Steve Davis and Samer Bagaeen for their good wishes. I’m also very grateful for the help and support from officers in helping me prepare for today and to my comrades in the Labour Group who have placed their faith in me to be a mayor who truly represents this fabulous city of Brighton and Hove.


I made my home in Brighton and Hove some 28 years ago and never imagined that I would one day become Mayor of the city that I had quite fallen in love with. What an honour and a privilege!  I loved, and still do, walking around the streets of Brighton and Hove and seeing all the stunning architecture from the Georgian, Victorian and Edwardian periods. So much to admire and be entranced by as so many others are that visit the city or live in it.


I also never imagined that I would be able to walk down the main streets or along the seafront and bump into friends and acquaintances – I thought that Brighton was too big for that, but I was wrong, it’s such friendly and welcoming city that you quickly feel at home here and as if you belong.


How lucky are we to live in this vibrant and dynamic city where the arts and culture thrive and are available at every turn thus securing us an international reputation for excellence in this area. The Brighton Festival, Fringe Festival and Pride attract hundreds of thousands of visitors to the city every year and help to create the sense of fun and of cultural diversity that we are so famous for.  The Open Houses during the Festival are also a huge hit with people who flock to see them, and also to have a good look inside other people’s houses. Fascinating!!!


It's not just the Arts and Culture either. We now have our amazingly talented football team, Brighton and Hove Albion, going into the EUFA Europa League.  This is a truly inspiring situation as Brighton and Hove Albion, formed in 1901, have never played in a European match before so it shows how far they have come along, especially since having their new home at the Amex, which only ever got built because of the persistence of local politicians and with the help of John Prescott.  So, huge congratulations to the team and their managers and I’d like to speak for the city in saying how incredibly proud we are of them.


Another one of the aspects of Brighton that is to be much admired is the extraordinary number of active, committed, diverse and highly focused voluntary groups and charities that exist in the city and how closely many of them work with the local council.  This speaks of the great sense of community that exists in the city and people’s commitment to helping others.


This brings me to the charities I have chosen to be my Mayor’s Charities:


The RSPCA – based at Patcham – a well-known and much-loved charity


RISE – again, a well-known and strongly supported charity in it’s work against domestic violence and support of those who have suffered such violence.

Impact Initiatives – a local charity with varied services aimed at supporting a wide range of people and emphasising well-being and the ability to lead fulfilling lives


Together Co – a loneliness charity for people of all ages which aims to change lives through befriending and volunteering.


I am looking forward to working with these charities and I do hope that you too will support them in the coming year, but I will also support as many others as I am able to by attending their events and raising their profile.  I would like to also support any clubs or associations that wish to hold events and to support local business’s as I recognise how tough these times are for them, especially due to high inflation and the long-term impacts of Covid.


I am delighted that Peter Wells from the Inter Faith Contact Group has agreed to act as my Chaplain for the year. For me this is the perfect choice and I look forward to working with him regarding prayers at Full Council.


I am also delighted that my daughter, Rachael, is joining me as my Consort during my Mayoral year.  She is smart, sassy and has a great sense of occasion so I have no doubt that she will be an asset both to myself as Mayor and to the city of Brighton and Hove. I would like to thank her for agreeing to this role and ask her to come forward to be presented with her badge of office.


I want to end by congratulating Councillor Lizzie Deane for her year as Mayor.  Lizzie has been an exceptional Mayor and has worked hard to develop and promote the role of the mayor thereby adding considerable prestige to it.  I’d like to wish her all the best.


I will, of course, be working hard to raise the profile of the Mayor too as I believe that the role is very important for the city and especially relevant in these challenging times.  We need events and activities to celebrate our wonderful city!”


6.3           The Mayor invited Councillor Davis to move a vote of thanks for the previous Mayor, Councillor Lizzie Deane.


6.4           Councillor McNair moved a vote of thanks to Councillor Deane as the retiring Mayor for her services during her term of office.


6.5           Councillor West formally seconded the motion and this was supported by Councillors McNair and Sankey.


6.6           The Mayor put the motion to the vote.


6.7           The motion was carried.


6.8           The Mayor presented Councillor Deane with a commemorative badge in recognition of her year of office.


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