A civic service for the 2017/18 Mayor of Penarth, Cllr Ken Lloyd ,attracted a capacity congregation at All Saints Church yesterday afternoon.
Prior to entering the church the Mayor – accompanied by his consort, Georgia Bennett – was required to swear the traditional oath of office administered by the Reverend Canon Peter Cox in the presence of two senior Penarth Town Council officers.
At the church door the Reverend Peter Cox read out the wording of the oath and invited the mayor to affirm his commitment, properly to undertake the duties of the Town Mayor with “honour and pride”.
As the mayor duly made that solemn undertaking, his affirmation was witnessed by two senior Penarth Council officials – the Civic Services Lead Officer and the Civic Services Support Officer.
The mayor and his consort then entered the church to participate in the traditional annual service . The congregation included members and officers of Penarth Town Council along with mayors, civic dignitaries, councillors and distinguished guests from other towns in the Vale. Penarth Town Council had also used its website to issue an open invitation to the “townspeople and visitors” to attend the service.
The hymns chosen were “What a Friend we have in Jesus“, “All Hail the Power of Jesus’ Name” and “Calon Lan” [Pure Heart] . A musical interlude was performed by soprano Llinos Haf Jones – which included “Summertime” from “Porgy and Bess” – and was followed by an address by the Reverend Peter Cox.
Donations were received in aid of the Mayor’s two chosen charities, Cancer Research UK and the Royal National Institute for the Blind. The service ended with the singing of the Welsh National Anthem and of “God Save the Queen” which most – but not quite all – Labour councillors in the congregation felt able to sing.
With the formalities over, the Mayor, guests and congregation were invited to the Paget Rooms to partake in refreshments.
Cllr Ken Lloyd was elected Town Mayor in May this year but the civic service is normally held at this later point in the civic year. The controlling Labour Party considers it a collegiate gesture to invite a member of “the other party” to occupy the ceremonial office of Mayor of Penarth for one year out of its 5-year term of office. Labour will remain in power until 2022 giving the party an unbroken 10 years in control of Penarth.