Evening of celebration for mayor

TONIGHT should be an evening of celebration for Joan Sennington - with the community as the winner.Mayor of Felixstowe Mrs Sennington is hosting her annual Mayor's Ball, a chance for the great and good of the resort to mingle and enjoy a fun evening, and to help raise a large sum of money for two causes close to her heart.

TONIGHT should be an evening of celebration for Joan Sennington - with the community as the winner.

Mayor of Felixstowe Mrs Sennington is hosting her annual Mayor's Ball, a chance for the great and good of the resort to mingle and enjoy a fun evening, and to help raise a large sum of money for two causes close to her heart.

It's also a chance to escape from the controversy which has dogged her over the past few weeks after she found herself at the centre of the political cauldron after some rash remarks to objectors fighting a site for 1,620 new homes at the resort.

The ball - being held at the Hotel Elizabeth Orwell - will benefit the Felixstowe Skatepark Association and Felixstowe Royal Artillery Army Cadet Force, which she describes as “two very worthwhile local causes”.

She says the cadets aged from 12 to 18 work very hard and can achieve many qualifications through the unit.

She said: “It's not all classroom work. There are weekends for the cadets in the field and an annual two week camp which is great fun for all.”

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The skatepark group is also for young people and is helping to raise the £180,000-plus needed for the facility to be built on the playing field at Orwell Green.

Mrs Sennington said: “FSA are passionate about making the proposal for a safe purpose-built area for 'extreme' sports a reality.

“The skatepark facility would provide a space to go and enjoy, encouraging healthy outdoor activities for all levels of ability.”

So far around £110,000 has been raised and it is hoped the ball, which features dancing to Gold plus a four-course meal, will generate some extra cash for the appeal.

The row over new homes has tainted her year in office, but should not stop her looking back with pleasure at many much more enjoyable events over the past 12 months - with others, including the presentation of Mayor's Awards and the HMS Ganges youth trophy, still to come.

The overwhelming view though has been that Mrs Sennington has been an excellent ambassador for the town, warm-hearted and friendly, interested in people and organisations, and has taken well to the role.

Mrs Sennington and her husband Norman - who have a son and daughter and four grandchildren - moved to Felixstowe nine years ago from Middlesex after retiring.

She became involved in community life, chairing the League of Friends of Felixstowe Hospitals and the local branch of the Conservative Association.

n. What are your thoughts of Mrs Sennington's year as Mayor? Write to Your Letters, Evening Star, 30 Lower Brook Street, Ipswich, IP4 1AN or email eveningstarletters@eveningstar.co.uk

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