Mayor, Councillor Mrs Sian Vaughan
meets the Executive Deputy Mayor of Cape Town, South Africa
On a recent holiday in South Africa the Mayor of Cowbridge (Ancient Borough) with Llanblethian,
Councillor Mrs Sian Vaughan and her consort Rob Vaughan had an informal meeting with the Executive Deputy Mayor of Cape Town, Ian Neilson. The meeting took place in the Civic Centre Board Room on the 1st December and had been arranged by friends of the Mayor who are South African but reside in Cowbridge, Dr Kevin Logsdon and his wife Julie both of whom know the Mayor of Cape Town, Patricia de Lille. Unfortunately the Mayor of Cape Town was not available but the Deputy Mayor, Ian was happy to meet up and compare notes.
The City of Cape Town is the second most populated city in South Africa after Johannesburg, with a population of approximately 3.7 million with a budget for the city at 44.3 billion Rand (about 17.5R to the £). Ian is also the Mayoral Committee Member for Finance. A huge difference in population and budget compared to Cowbridge Town Council with Ian being more like a Welsh Government Assembly Member. There are 231 Councillors as opposed to 15 in Cowbridge. The informal chat covered a variety of subjects including public attendance at Council meetings, tourism and transport. Co-incidentally later on in the trip Sian and Rob met the Western Cape Minister for Agriculture, Economic Development and Tourism, Alan Winde who knew Ian as they are both members of the Democratic Alliance Party. He was cutting a red ribbon to open the new orange line of the Franschoek Wine Tram. The Franschoek Wine Tram has been a very successful tourism business and has expanded its routes plus introduced some new double decker trams and created new jobs. The newly constructed double decker tram was modelled after the Blackpool Corporation tramways double decker tramcar circa 1923. The new Tram gives unique and unparalleled views of the fantastic scenery of the vineyards in the stunning Franschoek valley.
Although a private holiday both Sian and Rob carried the flag for Cowbridge with Llanblethian and continued their Civic Duties even when abroad.