A NEW mayor is beginning his term of office in Durham City.
Coun John Wilkinson is the 410th Mayor of Durham.
He was appointed at a meeting in the town hall of the City of Durham Charter Trust, which was formed to take over the ceremonial functions of Durham City Council when it was abolished in 2009.
After the meeting, Coun Wilkinson posed for photographs on the steps of the town hall with the new Deputy Mayor, Coun Amanda Hopgood, and other invited guests.
Coun Wilkinson, a retired teacher who represents Deerness ward on Durham County Council, went on a walkabout among the shoppers in the Market Place to distribute the Mayor’s Shilling – traditionally a gift to the poor and needy.
“I was born in Esh Winning and still live there,” said Coun Wilkinson. “It’s a great honour for any councillor and Durham man to be made mayor.”
Two charities are being supported during the year of office, Heel and Toe, based in Framwellgate Moor, and Blind Life in Durham.
“Heel and Toe helps children with cerebral palsy,” said Coun Wilkinson. “Blind Life in Durham are a group of visually impaired people who believe there’s no point sitting around feeling sorry for themselves, they believe in getting out and about and doing things. Both are a wonderful charities and I’m hopeful people will show their support for them during my year of office.”