During lockdown Hilary Goodinge, Mayor of Wareham was interviewed by her granddaughter for a school project. Hilary has kindly allowed Wareham Tower Chimes to publish it.
What was your role and what kind of things did you do before the lockdown?
I used to be out and about, being very busy! There were many opportunities to visit other towns in Dorset, for example to attend the functions of other Mayors in order to raise money for charities. On other occasions, wearing my chain and robes, I would proudly represent Wareham and be called upon to open new businesses, make speeches and attend important military functions.
I held my own events for charity and there would be occasions people would get in touch with me to help their causes, including Purbeck School who interviewed me on environmental issues.
Lastly I would chair Council meetings and Public meetings when necessary.
How has that all changed now?
Well we still have Council meetings, which the Town Clerk organised through Zoom, and we have enough Councillors involved to make decisions. However my chain remains in the safe and we cannot use our Town Hall or Chamber. All events have been cancelled.
Behind the scenes the officers are still working on line.
People have been in contact by email to me especially about loss of jobs and I am in touch with our local MP to relay issues.
I am even communicating by email with my counterpart Mayor in Wareham, USA!
What do you expect to happen at the end of lockdown?
I will be handing over my Mayoral office to the next Mayor.
We have been financially affected in the Council due to lack of income streams. We will need to have a big Council meeting eventually to catch up on business, but there will be no money for anything other than basic necessities.