Though of course, we still face many difficulties ahead of us and there is the potential for a few more bumps in the road ahead yet, the journey we have been through in West Lindsey in 2021 has once again demonstrated the sheer determination and selflessness that our District and its residents have in abundance.
From the re-opening of shows and indoor performances, to seeing over 2000 visitors attend the final Mayflower commemoration event in Gainsborough in November – despite the odds, we have come together and had an incredible year.
There is nothing that makes me prouder than visiting well-attended and well-organised events that have been successful, despite incredibly difficult circumstances – this year has been a testament to us all.
As the year begins to come to an end, for many of us it is often a time for a period of reflection.
For me personally, I reflect with honour that this year I was given the historic title of Chairman of the Council for the third successive year in a row – an honour which has never been granted before, and gives me an unrelenting sense of pride.
Being the Chairman of West Lindsey at the end of another year has given me – and continues to give me - an experience and honour that cannot be repeated.
From being invited to the opening of grand manor houses like Gainsborough Old Hall to being able to select Bransby Horses as the Chairman’s Charity until next year, it is an incredible honour to represent the people of West Lindsey in this way.
I also really want to take this opportunity to say a few words on what we have ahead of us in 2022.
At the moment, the road out of this pandemic may look a little tiring, but it has to be said, as a nation we have come so far.
To be in a position where we can have a more normal Christmas than last year, and to be in a position where we are able to protect ourselves and our families with three vaccine doses is a mark of the incredible intelligence and determination of our nation.
Everybody in our District who has followed the restrictions and come forward for the vaccines has played their role at this time – and I urge everybody, if there is more that you can do, please do it.
Over the Christmas and New Year period, if you are invited and are able to get your booster, please do so.
Every single vaccine helps.
I wish every single resident a happy and merry Christmas, and a healthy and prosperous New Year.
From the bottom of my heart – from myself and my wife Kathryn – I thank you all for your selfless acts during the past year – from our market traders, to our volunteers, to our key workers, to our teachers, to everybody – your actions have all been noticed and have played their part in keeping this District moving forward.
Thank you all – stay safe and responsible this festive season – and I hope to see as many of you as possible in 2022.
Coun Steve England,
Chairman of West Lindsey District Council.