May 2006: Cllr Penny Kraft, Town Mayor, 2006 – 2007
Little did I think, when I first came to Wivenhoe to open my business in 1969, that I would end up becoming the Town Mayor. To me in those days all councillors seemed very important and rather unapproachable, partly to do with me being in my early twenties of course, but I hope in this modern age the councillors are now more user friendly. I would like to feel anyone can contact us if they have any issues on a council matter.
I have always been interested in the business side of the town and, although many shops have gone, there are still many local trades people we can call on. For over twenty years I edited Wivenhoe At Your Service, hoping to show how many varied services we have in the town and, together with Cllr Peter Hills initiative in 1995, tried to persuade people to use Wivenhoe First. The Farmers Market has just started. It opened with a bang – people queueing to get in at opening time. Cllr Roberts was instrumental in setting this up and we hope it will breathe new life into the town.
My main objective was to get the toilet for the disabled installed in the William Loveless Hall. One of my duties is acting as Hall Chairman and, although we would like to stretch the walls at times to accommodate even more event possibilities, it serves the community well and is very well used by many different groups and organisations.
My chosen charities were the organisations of Wivenhoe, many of which operate on a shoestring, run by small groups of volunteers. We are lucky to have so many clubs and organisations in our small town, from cubs to the over sixties, something for all ages.
I think that Wivenhoe is a lovely place to live and, although a much bigger town than when I first came here, it still maintains a good community spirit. We are so lucky to have the river and the woods to walk through on our doorstep.
P.S. I enjoyed my year as Mayor and am happy to continue as a member of the council.