The new Mayor of Hailsham is Cllr Nigel Coltman, who was elected at the Annual General Meeting of Hailsham Town Council and will also serve as its chairman.
His long term vision is for a town that is more ‘people focused’, and is working towards a refreshed town centre that will become an attractive focus for the growing population.
Cllr Coltman said, “It is a huge honour to be elected as Mayor of this wonderful town. I have served here as a councillor for many years and I am grateful for all your support during that time.
“As your new Mayor and chairman of the town council I wish to highlight that ‘we are all in this together’ – although we may have come to this council meeting wearing different political colours or none, we are now a team, seeking the best for Hailsham and working in the interest of council tax payers, local businesses and community groups in our town.
“For the next four years, the town council will spend in the region of £1million each year of the local residents’ money on the running of its services including the town’s cemetery, allotments, parks, recreation grounds, play areas and youth facilities.
“Because we are a good council, we also have the responsibility of enhancing ‘well-being’, something that can mean different things to different people. To me it means, and will mean, working to continue improving Hailsham to the point where people speak about their pride in the town, as a place to shop, socialise, eat in our restaurants, get fit in our leisure centre, watch films and shows in our Pavilion cinema and walk or cycle on the Cuckoo Trail, among many other things.
“We will continue the excellent partnership work with other councils and organisations such as the MASHH Steering Group and projects including Hailsham Forward and Hailsham Street Market.
“In doing so, I very much look forward to working with you to continue to build Hailsham as a town that other market towns in the south east want to copy, as they see us growing successfully.
“Much can be achieved in Hailsham this coming year and I would like residents to know that my fellow town councillors and I are here for you, and if you have any issues about the town you should get in touch with us. While we can’t promise to be able to have a solution to every problem, we will always do our best to attempt to get some sort of positive outcome.”
Cllr Coltman paid tribute to former Mayor Cllr Jo Bentley, saying she had offered outstanding service and leadership. He said, “She has left some big shoes to fill and I’m grateful for all she did to help move this town forward particularly highlighting our need for better infrastructure.”
Cllr Amanda O’ Rawe, who was first elected on to the town council in May 2011 representing Hailsham South and West Ward, has taken on the role of Deputy Town Mayor and Vice-Chairman for 2015/16.