New Mayor for Morpeth

The Morpeth Mayor-making this year was a virtual meeting, held on Zoom for the first time.

By The Newsroom
Monday, 15th June 2020, 8:48 pm
Updated Monday, 15th June 2020, 8:49 pm
2019/20 Morpeth Mayor Coun Alison Byard, left, 2020/21 Mayor Coun David Bawn and 2020/21 Deputy Mayor Coun Rachael Hogg.
2019/20 Morpeth Mayor Coun Alison Byard, left, 2020/21 Mayor Coun David Bawn and 2020/21 Deputy Mayor Coun Rachael Hogg.

The meeting last Wednesday, it was postponed from its original date of May 20 due to the coronavirus pandemic, was a 'bare bones' essentials meeting to elect the new Mayor, Deputy Mayor, membership of committees and other essential business.

Coun David Bawn, the previous Deputy Mayor, was unanimously elected Mayor. He appointed his mother, Mrs Betty Bawn, as his Mayoress for the year and Rev Simon White, the Rector of Morpeth, as his Chaplain.

At 6.15pm, the traditional peal of bells rang out from the Clock Tower and St James' Church to announce the new Mayor.

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Coun Rachael Hogg was then elected as Deputy Mayor.

Speaking after the meeting, Coun Bawn said: "It is a tremendous honour to be elected Mayor of Morpeth and is a daunting task following on from Coun Alison Byard, who has worked so tirelessly and energetically for the people of Morpeth and her chosen charity.

“It is not hyperbole to say that Alison has been an iconic Mayor and I certainly have big shoes to fill.

"We are living through dark and uncertain times. The coronavirus crisis has affected us all – it is fair to say the sacrifices we have had to make in our daily lives have been unprecedented in modern times.

“One thing that should never be overlooked in such times is our mental health. There are times when many of us need support and therefore I am pleased to announce that my Mayoral charity this year (2020/21) will be local Morpeth charity Contact Mental Health.

"They provide help and support to those in our community who have suffered with their mental health and now, more than ever, that support will be needed.

"Although I have become the Mayor without the usual pomp and ceremony of the traditional Mayor making, and many of the traditional events that the Mayor would attend or organise are curtailed due to the current crisis, I am optimistic for the future.

"The community spirit displayed by so many local people has been truly humbling – the crisis has brought many of us together with common purpose and a resolve to make our community a better place.

“As the restrictions are gradually lifted and we return to our normal lives, we will need to work together to ensure our town and our local economy recovers as soon as possible.

“I look forward to working with my Deputy Mayor Rachael and my fellow councillors to play a part in the reawakening of Morpeth after its slumber and reaffirming and strengthening our town."