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Newbury Town Hall opens its doors to pupils and residents as it shares West Berkshire's heritage secrets



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Pupils at a Newbury school were given the chance to find out more about life as a councillor during a visit to the Town Hall.

Year 6 students from St Nicolas School, as well as members of the school’s council, enjoyed the visit recently, when they were able to try on the official robes and learn a bit about council life and decision making.

Ellis Joyce, year 6 teacher, said the group also had the opportunity to meet Newbury mayor Billy Drummond and town crier Brian Sylvester.

St Nicolas Junior School visits Newbury Town Hall. Ref: 41-1621
St Nicolas Junior School visits Newbury Town Hall. Ref: 41-1621

She added: “They had a brilliant time. Whilst at the Town Hall, they had a tour around, tried on the official robes and learned about the role of the town council in Newbury's community.

“They found out about the town council's budgets and the decisions they have to make when it comes to spending this money.

“They even got to meet some of the councillors, the town crier and the Mayor himself.

Deputy Mayor of Newbury, Gary Norman, showing the civic hats to Clive Herring ..Ref: 38-0721
Deputy Mayor of Newbury, Gary Norman, showing the civic hats to Clive Herring ..Ref: 38-0721

“The children were really inspired by the visit and learned lots of information about Newbury.”

Members of the public were also given the opportunity to get a glimpse behind the scenes at the town hall when it opened its doors for a weekend heritage event recently.

Visitors were able to view the council chamber, the civic staircase and other civic regalia.

They also got to see the Town Hall honours boards, which list the mayors of Newbury going back to 1596, and features many well-known local family names.

Rod Thomason, mace bearer for 27 years ..Ref: 38-0721
Rod Thomason, mace bearer for 27 years ..Ref: 38-0721

Although meetings in the town hall are open to the public and many community events are hosted there, the town council recognised that a lot of residents had never visited the building.

There was also a special display on the history of Newbury Market, former mayors who worked in the food industry and the town council’s Allotments and Edible Crop initiative.

The Town Hall portraits, 'The Newbury Coat’, the mayor’s throne and the council’s maces – which date from 1707 and 1758 – were also on display.

Newbury Mayor Billy Drummond with Hannah and Josh. Ref: 38-0721
Newbury Mayor Billy Drummond with Hannah and Josh. Ref: 38-0721
Newbury Mayor Billy Drummond
Newbury Mayor Billy Drummond
Aaron, Ashleigh, Lily, 6, and Emma, 4, Rieenour enjoyed looking around the town hall. Ref: 38-0721
Aaron, Ashleigh, Lily, 6, and Emma, 4, Rieenour enjoyed looking around the town hall. Ref: 38-0721
Newbury Town Hall
Newbury Town Hall


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