Chairman's Chat

7th December 2018
Dear Colleague,
Tuesday of last week was a very historic and memorable day for our district and Ely in particular, when we were privileged to have a visit by HRH The Prince of Wales and The Duchess of Cornwall. Roslyn and I had the honour of being presented to The Prince of Wales upon his arrival at The Thomas Parsons Almshouses. After chatting to residents in Poets House, The Prince visited the Stained Glass Museum and then, accompanied by The Duchess, he toured Ely Farmers Market. This offered the opportunity for them to learn about the Council’s Community Hub, and to hear about the work locally in combatting homelessness.
I was very pleased to have the opportunity to attend this year’s highly successful Business Boost at The Hive Leisure Centre. It was great to see so many local businesses supporting this important networking event. Undoubtedly the highlight for me was listening to a most inspirational presentation by keynote speaker Sally Gunnell OBE DL. Sally, who won the 1992 Olympic gold medal in the 400m hurdles, is a delightful lady, who really impressed me by taking the time to walk round the stands to speak to so many people.

With the Festive Season upon us, we have already represented the Council at two
Carol Services. Last Sunday, it was a particular pleasure to visit the rural village of
Wimblington, where Fenland’s Community Carol Service took place.
On Monday evening, St Edmundsbury Borough Council’s Carol Service was held in
the Cathedral at Bury St Edmunds. Joining other Civic Heads afterwards gave us the
opportunity as always to network and highlight what a diverse and forward-thinking
local authority East Cambridgeshire is.
On the subject of networking, this evening we have been invited to the Yuletide Winter
Reception, as guests of the Commanders of RAF Lakenheath and RAF Mildenhall. I
always find it particularly interesting engaging with our American friends.
We frequently hear them say how much they enjoy being based in our country, and
the friendship which is shown towards them.
When I was in civic office previously, I had the amazingly exciting experience of being
invited on a re-fuelling flight from RAF Mildenhall. There were only four in our civic
party, who included my colleague and friend, Councillor Richard Hobbs. It was
something neither of us will ever forget. We flew out as far as Dusseldorf and were
totally surprised as we were able to watch as many as 16 planes being re-fuelled in
mid-air. It was particularly memorable for me, as I had the opportunity to sit in the
cockpit during take-off. It certainly rates as one of my life highlights.
As I was compiling this copy, I received news that Palace Green Homes won the Innovation Award at this year’s Cambridge News and Media Property Awards, for their project at The Fledglings, Soham. The competition judges said: “This is an innovative, locally focused, community- driven scheme that delivers homes and reinvents profits for the future”. This is very encouraging news and a feather in the cap of East Cambs Trading Co. Ltd.
I hope you enjoy the build-up to Christmas. My next Chairman’s Chat will be circulated on 21st December, just prior to the big day.
Forthcoming Meetings
There are no meetings scheduled for the week commencing 10th December 2018
Week Commencing 17th December 2018
Monday 17th December 2018 at 4.00pm in the Council Chamber - Asset Development Committee
Tuesday 18th December 2018 at 6.00pm in the Council Chamber - Full Council

With Kind Regards

Yours sincerely

Councillor Peter Cresswell

Chairman of the Council