New era for Honiton as Vivienne takes the helm

HONITON S new mayor says she will be a very happy lady if construction work on the proposed Honiton Community Centre complex starts during her term of office.

HONITON'S new mayor says she will be "a very happy lady" if construction work on the proposed Honiton Community Centre complex starts during her term of office.

Councillor Vivienne Ash, regarded as one of the hardest working councillors in East Devon, referred to the project during her acceptance speech at St Rita's Conference Centre on Monday night.

"In my view, the key thing that is lacking in the town is a modern, purpose-built community centre," she said, going on to explain she is passionate about the project and that she has campaigned for the facility.

Mayor-making is one of the backbones of tradition in Honiton, but this year's event was tinged with sadness.

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"The civic year was defined by the tragic death of our mayor, Chris Tratt, last November," said Councillor Ash.

"He was a lovely man."

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Tributes were then paid to the late Councillor Tratt's widow, Jean, who courageously continued as Mayoress, supporting Councillor Ash, who was formerly deputy mayor, at countless public engagements.

A statement from Mrs Tratt, read out by town clerk Lyn Hargood, reminded those present of her late husband's aims and his vision for Honiton; the town he loved so much and served so well.

Councillor Peter Fleming was installed as deputy mayor.

Councillor Ash, who is a serving member of East Devon District Council, where she is Culture Champion, said: "I truly love the town and East Devon. Honiton is such a wonderful place to live and work.

"I care passionately about preserving what defines Honiton... I also believe that we have to be progressive by continuing to improve the town and keep it vibrant."


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