Cllr. Ian Buckley has been elected as the new Mayor for Penarth 2021/22.

Cllr. Buckley represents Cornerswell ward and is a member of the Welsh Labour group.  The Town Mayor is elected each year by Members at the Council’s annual meeting. As Mayor, Ian will become the ‘First Citizen’ of Penarth. This means: Performing ceremonial duties, acting as the public face of the Council, and representing the Council at official and community events.  Cllr. Laura Rochefort, also of Cornerswell ward, was elected as this years Deputy Town Mayor.

On accepting the Town Mayor position Cllr. Buckley said:

“I would like to thank my proposer and sponsor for putting me forward and I would like to thank all the Councillors at Penarth Town Council for bestowing the honour of being the Town Mayor on me.

I would like to thank the outgoing Mayor, Cllr. Wilson for his stewardship through what has probably been the most challenging year for all councils outside of wartime Britain.

As we hopefully say goodbye to Lockdown, if not Covid, this coming year we aim to bring back life to our beautiful town, not just for the local businesses but for our community as a whole.

I am very hopeful to have a full and eventful mayoral calendar and I look forward to working with the Town Clerk and officers in achieving a community led mayorship.”

As well as dedicating time to civic activitiesm the Town Mayor is also responsible for raising money for charitable causes of their choice. For his mayoral term Cllr. Buckley has chosen to raise money for Woody’s Lodge  and The Amelia Trust farm.

When introducing his chosen charities Cllr. Buckley said:

“In view of the mental health challenges faced by so many people, and made worse by the past year, I know that Woody’s Lodge and the Amelia Trust Farm offer an ideal social prescription in addressing issues of depression, anxiety and isolation without relying on chemical intervention. Both charities work so hard to improve mental health, well-being and education for all.”

Woody’s Lodge is a communication and social hub for veterans, emergency service workers and their families operating in North and South Wales. Woody’s Lodge also acts as a base from which 20+ charitable and statutory agencies work.

The Lodge was established in the memory of Penarth resident, Royal Marine, and member of the Elite Special Boat Service, Paul ‘Woody’ Woodland who sadly lost his life in a training exercise, before he was due to return for a second tour in Afghanistan. Woody was born, bred and schooled in Penarth, South Wales and it was Woody’s dream of owning a log cabin after his service that became the inspiration for the charity.

In the summer of 2018, the charity established their South Wales premises within the Amelia Trust Farm, which is just off of Five Mile Lane on the edge of Barry and in the heart of the Vale of Glamorgan.

The Amelia Trust Farm is a 160-acre countryside sanctuary based in the Vale of Glamorgan. The Trust believes that no one should be excluded from society and they have a long, proud history of providing therapeutic support to disadvantaged and vulnerable people in a Care Farm setting.

The vision is to use the Farm as a ‘rural lung’ for a variety of people but especially those who are disadvantaged and vulnerable in an attempt to foster self-help, build confidence and enhance employment prospects.

In addition to supporting the educational needs of many, the farm is also open to the general public throughout the year. With woodland walks, animals to see, play areas and a café there is plenty to do and enjoy.