Councillor Mark Heard, Chairman of Maldon District Council writes;

“You might ask ‘What does the Chairman of Maldon District Council actually do?’

“The main role of the chairman is to preside over Council meetings, moving the meeting along allowing individual members to speak on an agenda item so that the business of the day can be discussed and transacted efficiently. He (or she) is also the Council’s Civic head representing it at ceremonial and social events and promoting the district.

“There are a set of rules called ‘The Constitution’ which lays out the structure of the Council, how it will operate, how its members and staff should behave and how decisions are made. The Chairman uses these rules to keep good order in meetings.

“So, back to the question - What else does the Chairman do? Well, in a normal year he/she will attend various local functions, attend opening ceremonies or promote local businesses; he will meet with other Council Leaders and promote our district through award ceremonies or Civic Services.

“This year of course has been so different. All of our meetings have been held ‘virtually’ and I have ‘attended’ social gatherings from my dining room. These included a virtual coffee morning hosted by the Mayor of Chelmsford, several COVID-19 Update meetings with Essex County Council, training sessions, meetings in relation to the Bradwell Nuclear Power Station and with the Essex Fire, Police and Crime Commissioner and an Interview on Radio Caroline.

“Looking forward in my diary I have other meetings planned with Dementia Charities, award ceremonies, promoting our postal services and meeting our local MPs as well as attending other Council committee meetings.

“I hope that helps to explain what the Chairman does in our very busy civic year.

“I would like to also take this opportunity, once again, to thank residents for their patience with this dreadful pandemic in keeping our District one of the lowest affected in the County. Please keep to the rules and protect our NHS and each other!

“Let’s prepare for Christmas by shopping locally when we can and keeping our District vibrant and viable. Happy shopping and please keep safe.”

Councillor Mark Heard, Chairman of Maldon District Council