CHARD'S new mayor has chosen his two charities for fundraising for this year.

On Tuesday evening (May 15) at Chard Town Council’s Annual Town Council meeting, long standing Councillor Garry Shortland was elected the Mayor of Chard for 2017/18.

Alongside him, Cllr Andy Kenton was elected as deputy mayor.

Cllr. Shortland said “I’m extremely delighted and honoured. I look forward to representing Chard.”

The Mayor is responsible for the Mayor’s Charity Fund.  This is entirely separate from the Town Council’s funds and money raised is distributed to local charities at the end of the mayoral year.

Each Mayor chooses their charities for the year and decides on the fund raising activities which will take place.

Cllr Shortland will be raising money for Hope for Tomorrow and Lord’s Larder.

In 2007, Hope for Tomorrow launched the world’s first Mobile Chemotherapy Unit in a unique partnership with the NHS.

Owned and maintained by the charity and operated by trained NHS staff, these units allow cancer patients to receive treatment in a restful environment closer to home, saving stressful long distance travel and minimising waiting times.

Mobile Chemotherapy Units can travel five days a week throughout their counties of operation to five locations. These units have the capacity to treat between 18 and 20 patients a day and cost over £15,000 a year to maintain.

The Somerset unit travels to Chard, Bridgwater, Minehead and West Mendip.

Chard’s unit is called Bumble and generally meets at Tesco car park on Tuesdays.

Lord’s Larder is a Chard Churches Together service operating out of the Forefront Centre.

It provides emergency food supplies for families and people in need in Chard. Non-perishable foods are donated by local churches, schools and businesses.

One of the Mayor’s first events will be to organise a Community Tea Party on the weekend of June 17 and 18 as part of the Great Get Together to pay tribute to the late MP Jo Cox.

All over the country, many towns and groups will be organising ‘get togethers’ to bring communities closer and celebrate all that unites us.