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May 15 2013.

After six enjoyable years as Deputy Mayor and Mayor I handed over the chain to my successor Julie Carr yesterday, Tuesday the 14th of May.

It has been an amazing journey and I have been very fortunate because my last Mayoral year coincided with the Queen's Jubilee, the Olympics and the 70th anniversary of the Dieppe Raid. I have met and made friends with dozens of people and visited many groups and venues that I wouldn't have, had it not been for my role as Mayor.
My wife and I have helped raise tens of thousands of pounds over the last six years and that is something we are really proud of. In the two weeks we have been fundraising for Newhaven's latest good cause and have helped raise £1130 for the Community First Responders. I intend to still fundraise, and Marlene and I will still continue to run the Searchlight Charity shop in the High Street. Thanks to our customers we have raised more than £60,000 for Searchlight in the last three years.

April was quite a quiet month for Mayoral duties, starting with a visit to the Young Mayor of Seaford's award ceremony. Next came The Beavers tea party at Fort Road Hut, followed by the judging of the entries for the Newhaven Chamber of Commerce Businesses of the Year. Next came a church service and dinner with the Royal Society of St. George and a meeting with Vietnamese officials for a visit by their Ambassador and a presentation of a statue of Ho Chi Minh to Newhaven Museum. Ho Chi Minh was a regular user of the Newhaven Dieppe ferries and is believed to have worked on the ship "Newhaven" as a pastry chef in his younger days.

One of the nicest events we attended in April was held at the Winter Gardens in Eastbourne, where youngsters from the Newhaven Forum won the top award from East Sussex youth organisation, Sparks, for their services for youngsters in the town.

On Friday May the 3rd, courtesy of Newhaven Social Club, we held "The Mayors Last Bash." The Social Club put on a free BBQ and Disco and Sainsburys, The Drove, other restaurants, hair dressers and a tanning salon provided raffle prizes. Thanks to peoples generosity we raised £610 for the Responders, towards their vital lifesaving equipment. On the 9th of May I opened a play area for younger children at Meeching Valley School and attended the Scouts AGM at the Scout Hut in Fort Road. My penultimate duty was to thank those organisations that have provided money for the Seahaven Para Games for the disabled that will be held at Wave Leisure in Seaford during August. Finally I attended the parade and annual inspection of Newhaven and Seaford sea cadets. I have visited the unit on many occasions and have always been impressed. They are great ambassadors for our town.

I would like to take this opportunity to thank my wife Marlene for the six years she has supported me, my fellow Mayors, my council colleagues, and the people of Newhaven. Many businesses have helped my charities and my special thanks go to Angus Murray, Peter Carcas and the staff at Sainsburys, where over the years they have laid on events, provided raffle prizes and through the generosity of their customers, enabled me to collect thousands of pounds towards good causes.

In my role as Chair with NCDA I am currently working with Sainsburys on a new project to benefit the town, details of which will follow in the next few weeks.

So I shall sign off now - But I will return!

Graham Amy.