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Cheers greet new mayor to his role; THANKS GIVEN AT PACKED SWEARING-IN CEREMONY.

Byline: BEN KENYON

A STANDING ovation greeted Coun Mike Cookson as he was sworn in as the new Lord Mayor of the city.

The official ceremony saw him accept his mayoral robes from the outgoing Lord Mayor Coun David Wood.

Under the crest of Newcastle, he made the declaration of acceptance of office before addressing a packed council chamber at the Civic Centre.

Lord Mayor Mike Cookson was quick to give praise to his predecessor and also called for the support of his family and friends to help him fulfil his mayoral duties.

He said: "Thank you, this is a great honour and a great privilege. I will strive to make a difference." He pledged to help charities and volunteer groups all over the city and in particular the Meningitis Trust and the Children's Heart Unit Fund for personal reasons.

The outgoing Lord Mayor, David Wood, congratulated his successor and wished him well, while also reflecting on his own year in office.

His time has seen him trying his hand at speedway racing, horse riding and even putting himself up for the hair-raising Wall of Death.

He said: "It was a hugely enjoyable year. The role was very challenging and I couldn't have done it alone.

"I look forward to joining you all back in the real world." During the ceremony Coun Brenda Hindmarsh was confirmed as the Sheriff and deputy Lord Mayor for this year, and will go on to become Lord Mayor of the city in 12 months' time..
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Publication:Evening Chronicle (Newcastle, England)
Date:May 28, 2009
Words:251
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