The East Riding of Yorkshire Council leader’s column with Stephen Parnaby OBE

The East Riding Leisure Francis Scaife 50th Anniversary celebrations in 2015.
The East Riding Leisure Francis Scaife 50th Anniversary celebrations in 2015.

The weather is always a popular topic of conversation and the summer of 2018 has certainly been a scorcher.

I have no doubt that in years to come many people will look back on these days of sun and soaring temperatures with vivid memories.

For the council, the summer months have always been a time of both challenges and achievements.

Following my decision not to seek re-election in 2019, I thought I would share some of my memories of summers past.

One of the most exciting events in the East Riding’s history took place during the summer of 2012 when the Olympic Torch was relayed through the area.

I remember the huge crowds that turned out along the route to cheer on the torchbearers as the flame passed through various towns, including Bridlington which was the first community if the East Riding to receive the flame.

Speaking of major events, in August 2015, the council confirmed its support for Hull, UK City of Culture 2017 by becoming a principal partner of the year-long cultural festival.

The council committed £1 million of funding and support in terms of hosting events – such as the Wildlife Photographer of the Year Exhibition at Beverley Art Gallery which was so successful it is back again at the venue now and certainly worth a visit!

Bridlington Spa also played its part during the year of celebrations.

In July 2017, the world-famous Royal Philharmonic Orchestra played a selection of classical music inspired by the sea at the venue, alongside the East Riding Youth Orchestra.

In July 2015, East Riding Leisure Francis Scaife celebrated 50 years at the heart of the local community, and a special Open Weekend was held at the venue as the highlight of its anniversary year.

The following year, in summer 2016, the council completed a £500,000 upgrade of the Tone Zone gym and cycle studio to provide state of the art facilities to continue offering a first-class experience for leisure members.

Perhaps the most memorable summer was that of 2007, which will live long in the memory as the year when our area suffered devastating floods.

For more than a decade now, the council has worked closely with the Government and other partners to help improve our area’s resilience to flooding.

Great progress has been made and more than 100 schemes have been completed during the past 10 years.

In Pocklington, work will soon start on a £5million scheme to construct a large flood bund to store potential flood water before it reaches the town centre.

So, as you can see, recent summers have provided an abundance of landmark occasions and I’m confident that future summers will also provide many more memorable moments for the East Riding.