On the 13th October 2015 School Council went to the Civic Centre to meet the Mayor of Oldham, Ateeque Ur-Rehman, and the Youth Mayor Saskia Edwards Korolczuk. We went with Miss Bowers and Mrs Lutley.
First, we went into the Council Chambers where we got to sit in the councillors chairs. Mr Dean, the Mayors Attendant, knocked loudly on the door and we all had to stand up as the Mayor and Youth Mayor entered. After we had sat back down the Mayor asked for questions. When we asked a question we had to push a button for our microphone to work, after we had asked the question we had to press the button again, and then the Mayor pressed his button and answered.
We found out the three main things he does as the Mayor;
- Raise money for charity
- He represents Oldham at events, like opening new buildings
- He receives special visitors like Dr Brian Cox and welcomes them to Oldham
We also found out that he wears a special chain made of gold which weighs 3.5kgs to show that he I s the mayor. Mr Dean drives him to events in a special Mayoral car. In 1974 the Civic Centre was opened by HRH The Queen Mother. When she put the ceremonial key in the lock it snapped! His wife, the Mayoress has a chain with 16 diamonds and other jewels in. We also found out that Alexanders Great Uncle was the Mayor in the 1990s. In the Chamber there was a large Oldham Crest. We found out that in 1974 The Queen decided that Oldham Metropolitan Council should be formed and so the made up from all the different small crests of all the districts. We spotted Royton’s crest on the staircase wall.
We also had a vote in the chamber where we had to decide if we wanted a cinema, a theatre or a sports centre. We had to vote on slips and put them in a ballot box. The Sports centre won, but the Mayor told us that another sports centre is being built, a cinema is being built and the Coliseum Theatre is going to be renovated.
We looked in all the cabinets along the corridor and talked about the items. We then went into the Mayors Parlour and had a drink and biscuits whilst sat on comfy sofas. We were all very polite and the Mayor complimented us on our behaviour and questions.
We had lots of fun and learnt a lot about Oldham’s council and its history. The Mayor and Youth Mayor said our school council is like the Oldham Council because it has agenda’s, minutes, a constitution and an Executive Body. We hope we can see the Mayor again and some of us are thinking about being in the Youth Council when we are older.