The Mayor of Market Rasen is calling on people to support town businesses to help the town grow and prosper.
In his Christmas message, Coun John Matthews looks back at the past year and praises those who have contributed to another successful year for the town.
Coun Matthew says: “2017, my fourth year at the helm of the Town Council, has been yet another busy year for all of us.
“We closed last year presenting cheques for over seven thousand pounds to our two nominated charities, thanks to some very hard work by the Mayoress and her helpers, and the generosity of our businesses and local residents.
“We debated long and hard with West Lindsey over the implementation of parking charges, and are grateful to local business people such as Darren Lince and Adrian Campbell for their valuable input. It seemed a long journey, but December 6 saw the initial decision amended and we now have two hours free parking before charges are imposed.
“I urge the public to take advantage of this and use the car parks to do your shopping in the town, supporting our local businesses and use the adjacent car parks near the Primary school to avoid potentially dangerous parking on Mill Road.
“There have been numerous meetings and behind the scene discussions working towards creating a Town Business Partnership, to follow the legacy of MR BIG and direct the residual funds constructively and openly in to the town. This has been a lengthy process, but finally progress has been made and I hope that we will see positive moves early next year.
“It was a sad day when we had to admit that the rust had won and part of the old Skate Park on Mill Road Playing Field had to be removed for safety reasons.
“I don’t think any of us realised how much this was used – until it had gone.
“So we set ourselves a project to replace it.
“Councillor Stephen Bunney has worked tirelessly over the summer and autumn to engage with our young people, to find out what they want, find a design that is suitable and affordable, to raise awareness and some money.
“We appealed to Tesco and won the ‘Bags of Help’ award of £4,000. We petitioned West Lindsey’s Large Community Grant scheme and were awarded £8,000. The Town Council match funded this for another £8,000.
“We have been working with West Lindsey on funding for Town infrastructure in connection with proposed increased housing development. This was rewarded with a promise of £45,000 from a developer. We have had individual fund raising events and personal donations.
“To this end we have nearly enough money for the project and the equipment was ordered at the end of September. It will be installed early next year for us to have the official opening in March 2018.
“Personally, I think that this is a fantastic achievement in the time frame and would like to thank all those who have helped make this happen.
“The Festival Hall continues to be a focal point of our community, hosting events from Civic Dinners and receptions, exercise classes, music concerts, pantomime and theatrical productions and Youth Club meetings.
“The list goes on… But the building is 50 years old and we are doing a lot of work to see how and where we can modernise and improve the facilities that this hub of our society provides.
“As we draw towards the end of the calendar year, I was moved to see how many people attended the Remembrance Day Parade and Service at the Cenotaph. It was a record attendance and I am pleased to see our younger generation recognising the immense contribution that our service men and women have given in past wars and continue to do so in modern day conflicts.
“So, as Christmas approaches I would like to take this opportunity to wish all readers of the Rasen Mail a very Merry Christmas and Happy, Healthy and Prosperous New Year.”