African visit ‘a great opportunity to showcase town’

editorial image

AFRICAN delegates speaking at an international conference alongside Mayor Stuart Drummond have expressed an interest in visiting Hartlepool.

Mayor Drummond last week delivered two presentations at the Urban & Housing Development conference in Cape Town, South Africa, as reported.

The elected Mayor was criticised in some quarters over the timing of the trip with the council’s budget plans still up in the air.

But on his return he said it was a great opportunity to showcase Hartlepool.

Mayor Drummond chaired the conference on the same day as giving two presentations about climate change and his Operation Cleansweep initiative.

He said there was genuine interest in Hartlepool from a number of delegates, including the Mayor of Kampala, the capital city of Uganda.

Mayor Drummond said: “The Mayor of Kampala said he was interested in sending a delegation over here to see what we are doing around the Cleansweep operation, community development, our work with the voluntary sector and neighbourhood management.

“They are a developing country and it appears that they have quite a bit of resource to develop those areas.

“It surprised me how well the presentation went down.”

Mayor Drummond had taken a week’s annual leave and was in Cape Town for four days.

His expenses were paid for by the event organisers.

He added: “This was an excellent opportunity to showcase Hartlepool to an international audience.

Operation Cleansweep brings together Hartlepool Borough Council, Cleveland Fire Brigade and Cleveland Police, under the banner of the Safer Hartlepool Partnership to spruce up different areas of town.