It's been a wonderful year in Lyme Regis so far, we've had so many events in the last few months that I am not even going to attempt to list them for fear of missing someone out and causing offence.
As the Olympic Torch Relay prepares to pass through the town, I thought I would just mention some of the high points of the part of the season which I suppose we do have to call early Summer.
The first was the Civic Parade which took place on the first day of the Jubilee long weekend, the muster point was Holmbush car park and I was amazed at the number of people who were there. So many organisations were represented, all with name boards which were to be carried by local school children or members of the organisation. I'm told that this was the biggest parade that has taken place in Lyme, it is definitely something that we need to repeat in future years. As we processed down Broad Street the crowds were huge and very supportive. The front of the parade then got to the Royal Lion Hotel where I got my first sight of Alec Cuthbertson and Stan Constable who were our very special guests from The Royal Hospital Chelsea, our very own Chelsea Pensioners.
At this point, I have to confess that I spent quite a lot of the Jubilee weekend crying, I am a bit sentimental at the best of times and to see the Chelsea Pensioners standing to attention in their bright scarlet coats to greet us started me off. The Pensioners joined the Parade behind the Civic Party - they wanted to march with their comrades the Royal British Legion and as the Parade set off again there was a wave of applause behind us, in their honour, from there until we reach the dais on the Parade. It was a wonderful experience and one I will treasure.
Over the rest of the long weekend we were privileged to be part of many other events that were put on in Lyme by some of our wonderful organisations and the Jubilee Organising Group. We planted trees (twice), we judged scones, we attended tea parties (twice) and a fancy dress competition, we led the "local Lyme" part of the torchlight procession from Anning Road and much more.
The final event of the weekend was the Kingsway Street Party that was held in the Hub because of poor weather. The organisers had been worried that as the weather was so bad nobody would go to the party; I started seeing Tweeted photographs of the tables being set up during the day and it looked wonderful.
We went to visit the party an hour of so after the start and I was absolutely amazed by what we saw when we got there. The place was packed! There were children everywhere and whole families enjoying the fun - I loved seeing grannies who would have used the building as children dancing with their grandchildren in the same place. It was so fantastic to see the Hub (AKA as The Boys Club or if you're old enough "the place we used to go for Country Dancing") back in use, and being used as I remembered it. It was a really wonderful moment that produced more tears! I am very grateful to all those involved in bringing this building back into use for our community and very grateful to all those who helped with the Jubilee People's Millions competition in which, in a David v Goliath type contest, we annihilated the opposition and won £60,000. How very fitting that the Jubilee Street Party was held in the Hub - a year ago the building was unusable when it rained as the water poured through the roof.
Being taught boules by the Chelsea Pensioners on the lawn a the Alexandra Hotel was another wonderful moment - I wanted to sample the lovely scones but Stan and Alec wouldn't stop!
It was a great long weekend and what Lyme demonstrated to me is that it has a wonderful sense of community and that we can come together to celebrate our town and our people as well as recongising a national event - to use our local hashtag #LoveLyme
Published on 12/07/2012.