New Mayor of Chichester appointed

Richard Plowman is given his mayoral chain
Richard Plowman is given his mayoral chain

Revitalising the city centre, tackling climate change, and uniting communities were chosen as the 'three pillars' of the new mayor's credo as he was sworn in last night.

Speaking to fellow councillors and members of the public at the city council assembly rooms last night (Wednesday 16) Richard Plowman said: "We need to revitalise Chichester, the environment needs to be very, very high on our agenda as well. Climate warming, we all know, is happening so we need to deal with climate change.

John Hughes about to be given his walking cane as deputy mayor.

John Hughes about to be given his walking cane as deputy mayor.

"The other thing we want to do is to unite our communities. These are the three pillars I will be looking at for the future."

He was presented with a snuff box and an ancient mayor's ring as part of tradition and will be expected to keep the snuff box and ring safe until the next annual council meeting, when the artefacts are passed on to the next mayor.

Mr Plowman's induction also saw him choose two charities for the year ahead. Announcing the Dears Almshouse Charity as his first, Mr Plowman said: "They have been doing some great work and they are in the process now of building four more almshouses at Riverside which are much needed."

The other charity chosen was Sage House, dementia support, Mr Plowman said: "My mother had vascular dementia and it is a very difficult thing to cope with, the Sage House facility is unique I think in the whole of the country in that you can take somebody in there and they can be assesses and there are facilities there which are wonderful."

Former mayor Martyn Bell with representatives from Stonepillow and the Oxmarket Gallery

Former mayor Martyn Bell with representatives from Stonepillow and the Oxmarket Gallery

John Hughes of Swanfield drive was elected as deputy mayor. He said: "It's lovely to be here again after four years out and I'm very proud to be a member of the Chichester council and I'm going to carry out my duties to the best of my ability."

Former mayor Martyn Bell was thanked for his service to the city.

Mr Plowman said: "I would just like to say that I'm actually delighted, when asked to give this vote of thanks, and to show how grateful and appreciative for all the hard work Martyn and his lovely mayoress have done for Chichester."

Mr Bell's year in the post was described as 'fabulous' and Mr Bell called it a 'real privilege' to have the chance to meet 'so many superb people' in his year.

His charities as mayor were Stonepillow and the Oxmarket Gallery. Representatives from both charities were awarded just over £6,000 at the ceremony.