From the Town Hall: Extraordinary year as city's first citizen

July 09 2017
From the Town Hall: Extraordinary year as city's first citizen

This month, former Mayor of Wells, Councillor Alison Gibson, sums up her year

WE have now said a fond farewell to our 643rd Mayor of Wells and it is safe to say that Councillor Alison Gibson has had an eventful, memorable and challenging year wearing the prestigious chains.

Starting off her mayoral year with the mayor making ceremony, a day which Alison says was her fondest highlight of the year, all of her friends and family were gathered together to honour her new role as the head of the city council and first citizen of Wells. As Mayor of Wells she attended countless civic events, chaired council meetings and was a part of the carnival parade.

Alison considers the most memorable event to have been Dancing on the Green "for the sheer spectacle of all the children country dancing." She battled the elements and joined in with the dancing (fully robed) with the pupils of Stoberry Park School.

It would also seem that carol services were strong contenders for favourite moments for the mayor. Having attended various services over the year, two in particular stood out for her. The first was at Wells Cathedral with the WI, their anthem Jerusalem made her hairs stand on end with the accompaniment of the iconic organ. The second memorable service at Christmas was organised by St John Ambulance, a moment which gave her the opportunity to rock out to ‘All I want for Christmas is You’ by Mariah Carey.

Not only has it been a valuable and humbling experience for Alison, who was already a well known figure in Wells, but it has also opened her eyes to what Wells has to offer.

"Wells has so much, from tourist attractions, various festivals to attend, a twice weekly market, many clubs and organisations to become a member of, to name just a few things," she said.

It’s not just the events and landmarks which have made Alison realise how special a place Wells is, it is also the people. Wells is rich with volunteers who give up their valuable time to maintain the city. From events such as the Moat Boat Race, to Wells in Bloom, Wells really does have a strong and valuable volunteer team.

Although it has only been a year, the mayor, which is a voluntary role in our city, manages to engage in a wide variety of activities and events as well as attend their normal council duties. Alison in particular enjoyed visiting the schools and seeing what the local pupils are up to as they always provide something unique and interesting to enjoy.

Wells is steeped in tradition and history, and the mayor is part of that, so it is important to keep that going and highlight the importance of maintaining that role.

Alison said: "I am just an ordinary girl who has done something extraordinary for a year."