Agenda item



Moved by Councillor Moore, seconded by the City Mayor and carried:


Thank you, my Lord Mayor. I’m happy to propose this vote of thanks, I’ll try not to go on for too long because I know you all want to get to the samosas at City Hall.  Ross Grant, what a rubbish Lord Mayor, not!  Actually, Ross has been a terrific Lord Mayor. As first citizen of Leicester he has presided with due and impressive dignity over many civic occasions, especially when he got his new hat. His team have organised a programme of most enjoyable events, happy to say I was invited to many, afford myself of several cups of tea and slices of cake in the Lord Mayors parlour, served by the ever-reliable Chris, but I have to say that one of the most impressive was the Lady Mayoress’s coffee morning. I’ve never seen so much delicious cake and high-quality coffee consumed by so many famous and worthy celebrities in so little a space of time, and of course it did raise a large sum for Ross’s charity, the Laura centre.  Thanks are due also to Yasmin and Zara and Harris for their support, and it was delightful to see the children running around in that space in the tea room, but perhaps the most impressive thing from my point of view has been Ross’s chairing of the Council meetings. Right from the start he was authoritative, firm and fair.  He really does deserve credit for this.  Taking year 9 for the last period on a Friday afternoon for Personal and Social Education would be a walk in the park compared to controlling us rabble. He even enforced the five minute rule, I should know, I was one of the first to suffer, when he wouldn’t allow me to continue giving the City Mayor statistics on the length of time taken to get a real person on the phone when ringing the City Council. Don’t worry Peter, I will return to this, and I hope Annette will let me finish. Seriously though, Ross is that most special of Councillors, someone who rises above and beyond tribal party politics to put the interests of his constituents first. Pragmatic, industrious, consultative, sharing the compassionate side of Conservatism all too rare at the moment, so it has been easy for me to work constructively with him for Knighton, and it has been an absolute privilege.  I have to keep saying to myself: ‘Don’t mention the election’, but it is witness to Ross’s integrity that so many people have paid tribute to him upon the loss of his seat, due not through any lack of dedication on his part, but to the unpopularity of the government, and forgive me for saying it, Labour’s hard work in the campaign. I’m just very glad, on Ross’s behalf, that he was given the opportunity to be Lord Mayor, to add to an already splendid record of service by the way he has conducted himself this year in representing the city.  I’m sure Annette will be the first to agree, with me, that he will be a hard act to follow.  Ross, on behalf of us all, we wish you well, and we thank you for being in the Premier League of Leicester’s illustrious Lord Mayors. My Lord Mayor, I move.