The new Town Mayor for 2016 -2017

9 May 2016

Please note: this news article is in our archive. Articles were correct at time of publication, but should not be relied on for accuracy after the passage of time.

The new Town Mayor for 2016-2017 will be Councillor Bob Mainstone.

Bob has been an elected member of the East Grinstead Town Council for nine years and he is also a member of Mid Sussex District Council. He has represented East Grinstead as Deputy Mayor (twice) and has chaired the Planning Committee and Public Services Committee

Bob and his wife Christine, who is also a town councillor, moved to East Grinstead back in 1970 and consider the town a fine place to live. Christine was Town Mayor ten years ago.  She is now Mayoress to Bob and will accompany him in his role whenever possible.  They have a daughter, Sally, and a grandson Toby.

Bob’s career was in education and he has taught at Sackville School, Imberhorne School and Baldwin’s Hill Primary School.  At Imberhorne he was Head of the Lower School in Windmill Lane.  His teaching career spanned 44 years and he received an honorary degree from Loughborough University for his services to education. Bob also ran his own photography business concentrating mainly on weddings and his interests include cycling – he can be spotted daily riding in the town;  rugby – he is a vice-president of East Grinstead RFC and football – a die hard Brighton and Hove Albion supporter.

His deputy Town Mayor is Cllr Mrs Julie Mockford.

Bob’s three nominated charities for his Mayoral year will be:-

East Grinstead Town Museum – “Restoring Bodies and Souls”

The Museum is a special place in our town and holds an internationally important and unique story that needs to be told.  The pioneering work of Archibald McIndoe, who treated badly burnt airmen during World War Two at the Queen Victoria Hospital, is stored at the Museum.  The airmen formed The Guinea Pig Club in 1941 with 649 members and the club’s proud history also mainly lies in storage.  The Museum want to be able to properly show the amazing story of the Guinea Pig Club and plans are moving forward for the project “Restoring Bodies and Souls”.  By working with the Friends of the Museum I want to support the ongoing challenge to complete this important project.

The Bluebell Railway – “Elephant Van Project”

The dream of steam trains once more running into East Grinstead came true in 2013.  The Bluebell Railway’s popularity as a tourist attraction has subsequently grown now that it links with the town’s main line station.  There is a new project to improve the experience for families and young children by creating a dedicated children’s area at Kingscote Station – in our parish!  A former Elephant Van that was used to transport elephants as part of the circus train travelling from town to town in the 1950’s, will be converted for use as a learning centre for children.  A play area is also proposed at Kingscote station.  The Bluebell deserves our support towards achieving this exciting project.

Jigsaw (South East) – “Supporting Children and Young People”

Based at East Court Mansion, the charity Jigsaw (South East) offers support to children and young people who have a family member with a serious, life-threatening condition.  It also provides grief support to children and young people who have experienced the death of a significant family member.  The impact of bereavement can have a major impact on children’s home life, school and friendships.  It may also affect their health, behaviour and ability to cope at school.  We all know of children who have had to face such sadness and I hope you will join me in supporting Jigsaw (South East).