The first month of a new year as a Mayor of Dunstable has been a lot about planning, settling and recognising our volunteers.

My planned charity fundraising events have been finalised with all but one date agreed; it promises to be a different year of events with music at the heart at least two if not three of them.

With a new group of councillors comes induction events, explanations and showcasing the role of both councillor and mayor. It’s been an opportunity to invite some of the new councillors to some of the events as my official consort so that they get to see first-hand the role of the Town Mayor.

I’m determined this year to ensure those councillors who aspire to be in roles of responsibility truly understand the time, effort and energy that is needed. It’s an absolute honour and a privilege to hold the Mayoral role and I believe is not necessarily always recognised what you have to personally put in to make it a successful year.

Events to date have been considerably less than last June with no jubilee celebrations, however they have been just as enjoyable.

Celebrating the work of the volunteers we have across the community was a key message of month one. National volunteers week was an opportunity to recognise those that give their time freely to helping others and highlight the work that they do.

The Town Council’s events programme is certainly in full swing with the very successful Motor Rally. It was made extra special with the Truck Convoy coming through town and myself being able to ride in the first truck from the junction 9 start. A moment to remember!

Lots of events over the next month for both myself and the Deputy Mayor including representing the town at county-wide events at the Army Benevolent Fund’s annual Beating the Retreat and at the Bedfordshire Games for young adults with learning disabilities.