PANTOMIME cheers and jeers echoed around High Wycombe today as dignitaries hopped on the scales for the unique Mayor Making ceremony.
Click here for our full gallery of pictures from the event.
More than 100 people cheered as Cllr Khalil Ahmed was weighed into office to cries of ‘and no more’ on Frogmoor this lunchtime.
Outgoing mayor Cllr Trevor Snaith was heralded after the Town Crier announced he had not piled on the pounds at the public’s expense.
Wycombe MP Steve Baker, departing deputy mayor Cllr Paula Lee and Wycombe District Council Chairman Cllr Lesley Clarke were also among the dignitaries to celebrate maintaining their weight.
But plenty of public figures faced a chorus of boos after adding the ounces – including WDC Chief Executive Karen Satterford, the Wycombe Labour Group Leader Cllr Ian Bates and ex-mayor of the town Cllr Chaudhary Ditta.
But, in a break from tradition, the biggest cheer of the day was reserved for Wycombe stalwart Monty Seymour, 100, despite him adding ‘some more’.
Mayor Ahmed said: “It was a mementoes occasion - I’m very happy and proud, and I look forward to representing the town as mayor.
“I was convinced it was going to be ‘some more’ but I’ve been fortunate. The pressure is now on for next year – I think I will have to go on a bit of a diet.”
During a Town Hall reception, Mayor Ahmed announced his charities for the year would be Diabetes UK and the Cardiomyopathy Association.
He said: “I’m sure everyone knows people who are affected by diabetes. Many are being treated for it while some don’t even know they have.
“Similarly, Cardiomyopathy is the biggest cause of sudden death in the under 35s. I lost my own brother to Cardiomyopathy and would never want someone else to experience the loss of a loved one to this awful condition.”
In thanking volunteers, colleagues and the town’s residents for their support during his year in the Mayor’s Parlour, Cllr Snaith announced he had raised £32,400 for Child Bereavement UK and the One Can Trust.
He said: “Being the Mayor of High Wycombe has been a fabulous experience.
“Busy, exhilarating, satisfying, stressful, thoroughly enjoyable and I wouldn’t have missed this year for the world.
“If I was to sum it up, this town is blessed. It’s full of ordinary people doing extraordinary things. Thank you, High Wycombe, for the honour of being mayor, it has been a wonderful experience. Mr Mayor [Ahmed] – go for it!”
The unique Mayor Making ceremony was introduced in 1678 as then Mayor Henry Shepard’s was reported as being ‘drunk and misbehaving’.
It resulted in dignitaries being weighed at the start of the mayor’s term to find out who had been dining out on the public purse over the previous year.