Mary Clarke is to be honoured by the posthumous award of the Freedom of the City, a wonderful tribute. The award is to be made at a special meeting of Brighton & Hove City Council at 3.30pm on Thursday 14 December at Hove Town Hall.
Mary Clarke Statue Appeal Trustee Briony Goulden, and her two daughters Sophie and Lena, will receive the award on behalf of Mary. They are several times great nieces of Mary Clarke, who was born Mary Goulden. We hope supporters will come along to cheer them all on.
The meeting will take place at 3.30pm following an invitation-only reception for the Appeal at 2.30 hosted by the Mayor, Cllr Jackie O’Quinn. Councillors will make short speeches and Briony will respond. Child Ambassadors, including Sophie and Lena and River Isaac, will be there.
River Isaac will be accompanied by at least one other member of the Mary’s Lamp girls’ group, which she set up at Balfour School. River will be carrying Mary’s lamp, recalling Isabella McJKeown’s comment after Mary’s death that her friends and followers should “not mourn in silence” but “take up the torch and light the darkness”. We hope Isaac Abatan (21), our first Student Ambassador, will also be present to support the others. The Appeal Trustees will be there and our Patrons and Adult Ambassadors have been invited.
There will be photo opportunities in front of the large cut-out of the proposed statue. In addition to the lamp, we will also bring the resin maquette (the bronze one is too heavy to carry). Provided we have someone to carry it, we will also bring our beautiful embroidered banner.
Though the reception is by invitation only, we hope other supporters will be there for the presentation. If you would like to attend, or know people who might like to do so, please let them know. Please be there for 3.15 pm, in good time for the start of the Council meeting at 3.30. You will have to sit in the gallery, but there is a good view and you can make some noise in appreciation! With luck, we may be able to meet for a hot drink in the downstairs cafe after the event.