The Mayor presides over all Council Meetings and at present this means seven evening meetings a year, including the Annual Council. On each occasion, there would also be a day-time run-through beforehand with the Chief Executive.
The Mayor also aims to attend as many meetings of the Council as possible, civic duties permitting.
The main Civic Events such as the Civic Service, Remembrance Day Services, the Civic Carol Service and the Civic Dinner not only require the Mayor’s attendance but will also necessitate pre-meetings during which the detailed arrangements are made.
“Semi-Civic” occasions have included events such as a Conference for Essex Kids Clubs, Castle Point in Bloom Awards, the Victim Support A.G.M and the Duke of Edinburgh Awards – all of which have chosen to use our Council Chamber as their preferred venue. Such events are organised in conjunction with the Mayor’s Office and presided over by the Mayor.
Each year has its own focus and priorities but all Mayors will find themselves representing the Council at a number of (mainly daytime) meetings with officers and representatives of outside organisations.
Each Mayor also chooses to arrange a number of Charity fund-raising events with the hope of raising a substantial amount for the Mayor’s Charity Fund. As the proceeds are distributed to organisations that work to benefit local residents, the Mayor regards this as a natural extension of his/her role as the representative of the Borough.
Miscellaneous duties include hosting civic guests, foreign visitors, school groups and others who request a tour of the Council Offices and planning/briefing meetings with the Mayor’s Office.
The greatest number of engagements in the Civic Diary result from approaches made by outside groups or individuals inviting the Mayor to attend anything from a school fete or a 100th Birthday to a major Awards Evening or the Justice Service at the Cathedral, which is attended by other Civic Heads, the High Sheriff and the Lord Lieutenant of the County.
In any year, these alone can add up to around 300 day or evening, weektime or weekend engagements - sometimes three or more in one day.