This is my first Mayor’s Notes since being made Mayor on 31st May. I am looking forward to exciting times as your Mayor, and thank Lionel and Pat for all their hard work in the last two years. Jane and I will put every effort into continuing their good work and do our best for the community. The Mayor’s Civic Service will be held at St. Nicholas’ Church at 10.45am on Sunday 2nd June. All welcome. It is nice to have lived a lifetime in a town like Montgomery, which according to The Times is one of the top ten places to live in Wales. But we all knew this anyway! I am sure it’s down to the people that make it so. Lots of things have been going on including: the recent visit of the Rolls-Royces and the Triumph Cars, the Walking Trails, plus the improved May Fair. To top it all is the completion of the Town Hall refurbishment project with an event to re-launch it at the end of June: keep an eye out for posters with more information. Finally, congratulations to Ivor and Beryl Whittingham on being this year’s Show Presidents. Please support them in their efforts to raise funds for this year’s show. Kind regards Haydn Andrew, Mayor
People attending Montgomery’s Thursday market were given the opportunity to discuss healthcare issues with members of Powys Community Health Council (CHC), as part of their work to feed back local views into the planning and delivery of local health services. Naren Keeble from the Community Health Council said, “We are doing consultations in a number of places, and have been getting a good response today at Montgomery.” Members of Powys CHC regularly attend events throughout the county to hear about the difficulties that people face with health services. The main issues raised at Montgomery market were about doctor and dentist appointments, as well as the difficulty in understanding which health services are available and where they are available from - as there is no general hospital within the county. Mrs Mary Gould, who was sharing her views, said, “I think the health service is very good - especially from the specialist nurse practitioners, who are wonderful.” Powys CHC member and Montgomery resident Dr Anthea Wilson said, “People were full of praise for the service they receive, but getting appointments with doctors and dentists can prove difficult and leaves patients feeling anxious and frustrated.” Another key issue raised was that when a patient is referred for treatment they are not kept up-to-date with the latest information on when they may be seen; this also leads patients to worry that they have been forgotten about. The Powys CHC team talks to the public to find out their views on services but also visit hospital wards and surgeries to check whether the services that we all receive are of a high standard. It also allows patients to give their views at the time that they are being treated. The team then acts on this information through discussion with the hospitals and surgeries to improve the patient experience. Powys CHC also offers an Independent Complaints Advocacy Service. If you are unhappy with the care and treatment that you, or someone else, is currently receiving or has received from the NHS then the advocacy team is there to support you. They can be contacted on 01874 610646. The patient engagement team at Powys CHC (Flora and Naren) enjoyed their day at Montgomery market and you will see them around the county throughout the summer. For more information on where you can find Image: Naren Keeble listens to Mary Gould’s views during the consultation at Montgomery
The Delage Register and British Hotchkiss Society enjoyed 4 days in Montgomery with their weekend rally being based at the town’s Dragon Hotel. Rally organiser, Mike Tebbett, the only one of the group who had visited Montgomery before, had chosen the town as the venue for the weekend following his enjoyment of a visit with The Light Car & Edwardian Section of the Vintage Sports Car Club just over a year earlier. On arrival, club members were treated to an historic tour of some of Montgomery town's interesting sights by Dr John Welton of the Montgomery Civic Society. Their weekend itinerary included drives out to the Welshpool and Llanfair Light Railway, Powis Castle, Llysdinam and Elan Valley. On Saturday afternoon, after the group returned from Welshpool, Montgomery Town Crier Sue Blower delivered a well-researched and well-received proclamation, saying: “Delage by title, delightful by image Cars from our history, with beautiful bodies and frontage Company founded in 1905 With Louis Delage hoping taking the risk would allow them to survive The proms model production, Type A, a voiturette The company becoming noticed, their future clearly set How wonderful to welcome you to this, our Historic Town Your cars have brought great joy and interest Faces full of smiles and no one wearing a frown Enjoy your visit to our beautiful Montgomery Come again to meet old friends Take a warm Welsh greeting back with you - this has become our Town Crying trend Good luck, God’s blessings, safe journey to all Pob lwc, Duw bendithio siwrnai ddiogel i chi gyd” Moira Swinbourne, who visited with her 1926 Delage DI, said, “Thank you for making us so welcome. You have a lovely town which everyone takes so much pride in and you are all so friendly. The staff at The Dragon were first class. The Town Crier was wonderful - we really did appreciate your visit. I for one will be back.” Mike Tebbett added, “All of the Rally participants were thoroughly impressed by Montgomery, with many vowing to return at a later date.” After the planned itinerary was complete, the visitors had an extra treat as they were invited to view the glorious garden at Ted and Jill Bowen-Jones’ home on Monday morning before leaving the town, sharing tea and biscuits with the lovely couple too. Several members gave money for the pair's charity as a thanks for this generous gesture. Mike Tebbett said, “This was a wonderful way to bring our superb weekend to an end!”
Montgomery Town Council and the Montgomery Community Buildings Preservation Trust are proud to announce that the official re-opening of the newly refurbished Town Hall will be on June 29th from 8pm to midnight. Entertainment will be provided by an Open Mic Night where members of the public will be encouraged to perform from a couple of numbers up to a 20 to 30-minute set. Organiser Mike Mills said, "It's an opportunity for all those budding rock stars, frustrated poets and would-be entertainers to get on the stage and enjoy their moment in the spotlight." He continued, "We want to demonstrate the talent we have locally and showcase to everyone what a great venue the Town Hall is for any social event." There will be a bar available, and the lower floor will be used by local food producers and market traders to provide refreshments and produce. Councillors and Trust members will be on hand to show people the improvements, and answer questions about the refurbishment and also about the future use of the Town Hall. The open mic night is free to enter. Anyone who would like to perform should either come along on the night or contact Mike Mills on email@example.com or 01686 668442.
"Way back in the noughties and under the leadership of Mayor Bob Jones, the Town Council decided that the township of Montgomery needed new signs on the roads to welcome visitors. Rather than pick signs from a catalogue, the council chose to have a competition to design the best signs for the community. Several entries were received from school-children and artists, but in the end the council voted on an entry by Philip Humphreys. The new signs were commissioned, cast by a company in Derbyshire, and fitted at every road entrance to the town. They were quite a spectacle when they were installed, and gave a really wonderful welcome both to visitors and to residents returning home. "Now in 2019, the once bright and beautiful signs are now looking a bit dull and sad! Although over the years many residents including myself have been round and cleaned them all, the Welsh weather has taken its toll, with the sunshine fading the paint and the frost and rain causing the aluminium to corrode - not to mention the salt and grit from winter road maintenance. I spoke to the original sign-makers in Derbyshire, who are still in business and remember making the signs – they even still have all the details of the paint colours. They have agreed to refurbish and repaint the township signs back to their original standard. With a bit of local help, I am going to take all the signs down and drive them over to Derbyshire and then collect and refit them once they have been restored. They will be stripped back to bare aluminium, then primed and repainted, and should then last another 20 years. "I have set up a JustGiving crowdfunding page to raise £1500 to carry out the restoration. We have all been hit with a big council tax raise this year and every pound the Council spend will impact next year’s budget and every household’s pocket, so I thought, why not take this one on and see if we can give the town a boost without hitting those who may not see the benefit of the new signs. The Town Council have agreed to make a contribution if it’s needed. JustGiving is really easy to do: follow the link below or go to justgiving.com and search ‘Montgomery town signs’. Or you can call into the Dragon hotel and make a donation at reception. "Thanks to all of you who have already donated and all who choose to help. If the target is not met, I will refurbish as many signs as I can, starting with the worst one first." - Simon Bedford, Broad Street, Montgomery https://www.justgiving.com/crowdfunding/montgomery-town-signs Picture by G17 Photography Services
A lovely letter of thanks to the town from the Rolls Royce Enthusiasts Club Welsh Section (click on the image to read)
Montgomery’s first evening of World Book Night events was a real success. The sixteenth century Eaves and Lord Bookshop, cosy Ivy House and the Den at the Dragon proved perfect venues and the event hosts pulled out all the stops. Lots of good reads and a great event, thanks to the wholehearted participation that made a true Montgomery evening. Star attraction, murder mystery writer Myfanwy Alexander (pictured), entered fully into the spirit of the evening. She cleverly inveigled participants into writing a perfect murder in under an hour, the workshop enlivened by her inimitable wit and perspicacity and a wealth of apposite, and possibly even true, anecdotes. At Ivy House, 15 local people presented their choice of a favourite English or Welsh book with great aplomb, each keeping carefully to the allocated three minutes. Montgomery Music and Drama Society chose spirited excerpts from ‘Under Milk Wood’ ending perfectly with a rendition of ‘Eli's Prayer’ sung by the Town Crier, and harmonised by one and all. The recommended books varied from ‘The Upanishads’ and ‘News from Nowhere’ to ‘Fat Man in France’ and ‘Keeping On, Keeping On’. The full list can be found on the Montgomery Wales Facebook page* and most of the titles can be borrowed from Montgomery Library or purchased from the bookshop, along with Myfanwy's intriguing murder mysteries. To complete the celebration of books and share the joy of reading, The Reading Agency had awarded 80 free copies of Lucinda Riley's ‘The Seven Sisters’ to Montgomery. These were handed out on World Book Night from the Library, Ivy House and Dragon Hotel, to passersby, and to groups in Montgomery, Kerry and Abermule. Myfanwy Alexander will be back in Montgomery on the 4th of June when she will be speaking with Clwb Eiddew (Welsh-language book and conversation group) about her books. She will also be appearing at this year's not-to-be-missed Montgomeryshire Literary Festival at Gregynog (www.montylitfest.com). Next year, this Festival comes to Montgomery - and it promises to be a rather special event. * Link to Recommended Good Reads posthttps://www.facebook.com/montgomerypowys/posts/2241929619352293
"My grateful thanks to Cath and the 1st Montgomery Guides for turning out early on a Bank Holiday morning to help clear the Town Memorial Garden of weeds. The team approached their task without hesitation or murmur, until downing tools as the first woodlouse made an appearance - necessitating some deft negotiation on animal welfare before clearing could recommence. In all over 10 bags were filled with weeds, which a kind parent, Glenn, delivered to recycling. No woodlice were hurt or injured." - Paul Hodgson
I will start by congratulating Montgomery Town Football Club on winning the league and promotion. Good news and good luck going forwards! Now that the days are getting longer and, hopefully, warmer, Town groups and organisations will be busy with spring and summer events. On Sunday 28th April there will be approximately 40 Rolls Royce cars of various ages having a lunch stop in the town. Please can Town residents try to keep Broad Street clear of parked vehicles from 10.30am to 2.00pm to help with parking. On Thursday 2nd May is the May Fair, an annual event going back centuries to the Market Charter. Again, please could vehicles be removed from Broad Street on Wednesday 1st May for the Fair to set up. Please respect this, as parked vehicles have caused disruption in the past couple of years and fewer stalls have been able to set up, so the Fair has been less fun than it could have been, especially for the children. Powys County Council green bins at the ‘bring sites’ will be removed after April. There is an opt-in service for collection of green waste: you will need to register at the Powys County Council website and pay an annual fee. As a Town Council we would have liked to keep the green bins at our recycling car park, but this was out of our control. Please be aware that if you use a gardener to remove your waste, they must be properly registered and have a licence for waste removal, or you as the householder are liable. As this is my last Mayor's Notes, I would like to thank you all for your support over the last two years. The annual Mayor Making Ceremony will be on Friday 31st May in the Town Hall. - Lionel Weaver, Mayor
Congratulations to Trefaldwyn Vets veterinary nurse Charlie Puttock who was nominated for Petplan ‘Vet Nurse of the Year’. There are various categories of award in the Petplan Veterinary Awards 2019, which are designed to acknowledge outstanding members of the profession, and to provide an opportunity for pet owners to recognise the hard work and dedication of veterinary staff and say 'thank you'. Vet and colleague Holly Spurr said, “Charlie joined Trefaldwyn Vets a year ago and has been a wonderful addition to our team. We are delighted that her efforts have been recognised!” Finalists will attend a prestigious award ceremony on Thursday 4th April where the winners will be announced.