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April 8 2013.

The beginning of March saw the dreaded lurgy, alias the winter vomiting sickness, causing devastation in the Amy household. My wife and I had been due to attend the Sussex University Royal Naval Unit (URNU) ball, which was a fundraising evening for the Newhaven and Seaford Sea Cadets, TS Defiance. Fortunately Steve Saunders and his partner Sharon came to the rescue with just three hours notice and went in our place.

Having overcome the bug I was due to attend the AGM of the Sussex Samaritans in Hove. Unfortunately this event is normally poorly supported, so I like to go because of the vital work they undertake. Once again fate took over as a few inches of snow caused traffic chaos on the A27!
Fortunately, on the 13th of the month I was able to join our Young Mayor for the reopening of the Lewes Road Hut, following extensive refurbishment. It looks better inside today than when I played football for British Rail nearly 50 years ago when it was used as changing rooms!
Next it was off to meet old friends at Sainsbury's and give out prizes for the best dressed staff in aid of red nose day. Once again with the help of customers hundreds of pounds were raised.
Many years ago I saved a fellow worker's life when I insisted he wore a safety helmet on a job. While pulling out a tree with a bulldozer, a chain snapped, which sliced across his head, fortunately only causing a small cut above his eye. When I was asked to open a safety exhibition at the Enterprise Centre for a firm called Tennyson Suite I was able to recall many instances where today's stringent safety measures would have saved several people from death and serious injury.
On a happier note my wife and I were members of a party of 62. including children. for a visit to our twinning town over the Easter weekend. As always our French friends gave us a wonderful time and the Mayor, Nicholas Bonneau. paid for the coach from Dieppe to La Chapelle and back. This enable the twinning committee to pay for the children on the ferry crossing, meaning the parents only had to pay for themselves. For some of the youngsters this was the first time they had been abroad and judging by some of the tears, many were sad to leave.

Let us hope that we can reach an agreement with NPP so that the French youngsters can join our children and play on an English beach!

Graham Amy
Mayor of Newhaven