As we approach the end of 2021, Christmas will be a time of sadness for many but also of hope. None of us expected that we would again be facing further restrictions on meeting up with families and friends and the sadness of Christmas without our loved ones who are no longer with us.
However, as we look back over the past year, we have much to be grateful for when we see the resilience of our community and local organisations.
I am very proud of how Farnham and its individual communities have been working together for those most in need.
The volunteers across Farnham have been outstanding whether in the vaccination service, food bank, Meals on Wheels, Lions, Hedgehogs, Rotary or as individuals through the Farnham Neighbours’ Network.
Our philanthropic groups have collaborated with the CAB to help meet fuel hardship and other needs through the Farnham Support Fund and our business community has focused on sustaining Farnham as a vibrant retail and business centre.
New areas of focus have seen us look at the needs of younger members of our community and I was delighted to see significant funding won by both Change of Scene and Hale Community Centre to support the needs of young people. These awards recognise inspiring work across Farnham and also the spirit of the people in each of our communities.
I would like to pay tribute to what my fellow councillors and the staff at Farnham Town Council have achieved, winning the national accolade of Council of the Year and a Green Flag award for Gostrey Meadow as well as further success with our Farnham In Bloom ’family’.
Farnham Town Council works hard to bring a successful and safe events programme and make the town attractive and has again achieved this in 2021 with careful planning for Covid-safe events.
I was immensely proud to see our community come together for a number of civic and commemorative events throughout the year, most notable of which was Remembrance Sunday and the re-dedication of the war memorial which is a symbol of the sacrifices people have made for our liberty, cultural development and future.
Finally, may I extend my thanks on behalf of all the people of Farnham to all who have volunteered time and energy to helping others throughout the year and increase our sense of neighbourliness and community as we revive Farnham together.
Merry Christmas everyone. God bless.
Cllr Alan Earwaker
Mayor of Farnham