TALKING POLITICS: The true value of democracy

Ballot box
Ballot box

Mansfield mayor Tony Egginton on the Scottish referendum vote and valuing our democratic freedom...

Whatever the outcome of the referendum vote in Scotland I sincerely hope that all the national media attention devoted to the Yes or No for an independent Scotland has made people more aware of the values of their vote.

Democratic accountability has been one of the key drivers during my term as your Elected Mayor which was a key decision made by the electorate of the District back in 2002 – coincidentally via a referendum.

One of my many challenges has been to get teenagers more aware of the democratic process be it at local or National level and one of my initial pledges was to introduce a “Youth Mayor”, next month will see the voting and installation of Mansfield’s seventh such individual– so if any parent or grandparent reading this column feel they have a family member that could do a good job for the Youth of Mansfield make sure they get involved through their school. If you require any further information contact Sioned Dolan on 01623 463372 or e mail

So to close on my delve into “politics” I really hope that the message that comes through from tomorrows vote is that, to not exercise your right to vote is a wasted vote, however disenfranchised you have become with the political system.

Another event soon to be with us is the final of this year’s Miss Mansfield competition and our congratulations should go to current incumbent Grace Turner who has had a wonderful year and she will take with her some great memories. I am immensely proud to see how she has grown in confidence and stature during her reign and was particularly proud when she hosted the “Little Princess Trust” ball at Sodexho, which was a fund raising event for her chosen charity. Grace talked to the audience about the experiences she gained and one of the highlights was a visit to Mansfield, Ohio, USA earlier this year – so a big thank you from me for supporting Grace in Miss Mansfield’s 40th year. Another young lady to bring her success back to Mansfield and opening a new business was Katie Funk a former Cantamus girl who opened “Funky Stories” on Toothill Lane recently. It was great to see Sheila Haslam and Ann Irons calling in on the opening day to wish one of their girls every success.

Funky studio’s is her in Mansfield to offer quality tuition across all areas of performance to students who have a desire to pursue a career in the industry of performing arts. They offer each individual their personal guidance by means of small class sizes and professional lead training by Katie and other tutors who have and are still working in the industry to help build knowledge and skills. Funky Studio’s also believes in building confidence in each individual through group support and they create opportunities which offer students the chance to do “West End Workshops” and in doing so have direct contact with current performers working in the industry today. Overall they are there to guide and help students to fulfil their dreams, hence their strap line…Don’t dream it… BE IT!!!

For more information contact Katie on 07989 629574 or e mail

I am sure those of you that travel up and down will have watched with interest the care home development on the former Remploy site. If you dropped in to their open day last Sunday you will have seen that John and Gail Walton have provided a stunning facility to add to some already fantastic care homes in our District. John came to Mansfield in 2003 when he purchased the Woodleigh Christian Care home, off Chesterfield Road and has now added “Bailey House” which is a much larger facility. If you didn’t get chance to drop in then call Samantha Karanagh on 01623 620719 to arrange a visit.

As usual I will finish on a sporting theme with our congratulations to the Birchall Brothers who won both races at Donnington Park as their season draws to a close and it looks likely that they will finish runners-up in this year’s world sidecar Championship. Ben has done extremely well following their accident in the Isle of Man T.T. races in June of this year and both him and brother Tom will be challenging to be crowned World Champions in 2015 following their last success in 2009.