It probably won’t surprise you to know that when I was a lad Sunday trading didn’t exist.
How times have changed. Like it or loathe it, the shops are just as busy on Sundays as any other day.
Under new plans, the government wants to devolve powers to local authorities to decide on Sunday trading hours. Currently, large stores can open for up to six hours and small shops all day.
I have spoken to business owners and residents and they have raised cases for and against.
On the one hand, extra hours of Sunday trading generates extra business in Peterborough and boosts income for retailers.
On the other, there are those that fear allowing larger stores to open all day on a Sunday would see local, independent shops lose trade, putting a number of them at risk.
I want to be able to speak to our traders and make a decision on Sunday trading hours based on the needs of shoppers and retailers and this is why I’ve thrown my weight behind the government plans.
As with all issues that affect you on a local level, if you have a view then please do get in touch with me.
In many parts of the UK libraries are closing because of the huge financial pressures faced by councils. I’m always proud to tell colleagues across the country how we have managed to keep all our libraries open and for longer using self-service technology. In fact, more than 6,500 people have signed up to the new technology.
There is even more good news for our libraries with the announcement of a £24,705 cash boost from the Arts Council to improve Wi-Fi access.
This will enable all our residents to access the internet through libraries without having to log on to a public network computer via their own devices, widening access to our library facilities.
It is important for us to offer services like this so that we can encourage more people to use and enjoy their library.
On Sunday I will be attending the Remembrance ceremony in the city centre and I’d love to see as many of you there as possible.
The Mayor will lead a procession from the Town Hall to the war memorial on Bridge Street for wreaths to be laid at 10.15am. A service will then be held in Peterborough Cathedral at 10.30am. There will also be a silence at the war memorial at 11am.
On Armistice Day (11 November) there will be a two minutes’ silence at the war memorial at 11am.
This year carries extra poignancy as it marks 70 years since the end of World War II. We should use this occasion to reflect on the sacrifices of our armed forces – both in the wars of the past century as well as more recent and ongoing conflicts. We must truly appreciate the freedom we enjoy thanks to them and ensure their bravery and loss is never forgotten.
Finally, I’ve got a couple of thank-yous to make. A big thanks must go to the organisers of last weekend’s Diwali festival. They deserve huge credit for a fantastic event which lit up Cathedral Square.
And another big thanks to everyone who sponsored my wife, Barbara, and I for the Perkins Great Eastern Run Anna’s Hope fun run and helped us raise over £800 for the Glinton Friendship Club and Castor Evergreen Club.