Jalsa Salana Convention

Image of the International Bai’at

Sue attended the Jalsa Salana convention, taking place on the  2nd, 3rd and 4th of August it is the UK’s largest Muslim Annual Conference, a three-day event which sees nearly 40,000 visitors- including Parliamentarians, diplomats, religious leaders and proffesionals from 115 countries attending. The convention itself spans over a period of three days, with a busy programme consisting of seminars, discussions and various exhibitions and events taking place; notably the International Bai’at: A pledge of Initiation where 38,000 form a human chain and pledge themselves to the teachings of Isam and to the Khalifa’s leadership, an incredible event showing true solidarity and Community.

In 1889 Hazrat Mirza Ghulam Ahmad founded the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community, which is now established in more than 207 countries, actively leading and promoting a global peace campaign to place respect and peace at the forefront of their message. The UK community rose in 1913, and with currently over 130 branches it is one of the oldest established Muslim communities in the UK. 

Humanity first logo.

“Love for All, Hatred for none” is the motto under which the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community lives, the message of this motto is truly refected within the charity “Humanity First” which was founded by Hazrat Mirza Ghulam Ahmad in the year 1994 and now operates in 53 countries – this international charity provides long-term aid and assistance to those who are suffering from natural disasters or human conflict. Their mission statement reads as follows:

“Humanity first is a charitable trust established to promote and safeguard human life and dignity. It is a non-political,non-religious, non-sectarian international relief and development agency that works with the worlds poorest and most vulnerable statement’

In 2018, Humanity first had an astounding impact with their incredible work; assisting 47,106 people in disasters in 13 countries, supporting 603 orphans in 8 countries and building 3 new schools amongst a number of life-changing projects. 

Through working on both disaster relief  and human development, Humanity first are ensuring that after a natural disaster they carry on supporting members within those communities, tackling important aspects such as ‘knowledge for life’ and ‘Gift of Sight’, treating over 20,000 patients over 15 years  to ensure individuals facing problems with their eyesight receive a better quality of life.

Sue commented “This event really took my breath away. I had no idea of the work undertaken from a very young age to help the community. I found the convention eye-opening and I would like to pass on my thanks for all that is done”

For more information about Humanity first and the amazing work that they do, click the link below: 


The Beating of the Retreat

On the 2nd of August Sue attended the Beating of the Retreat, at the Royal Military academy Sandhurst – by The Band of the Parachute Regiment. 

On the 1st of August in 1942 the Parachute Regiment was formed, three battalions were formed at a later date, however, in 1985 they were disbanded and reformed. It was in 1994 when the Corps of Army Music was formed which resulted in the amalgamation of the bands- creating the the current ‘Band of the Parachute Regiment’, who still maintain a full schedule of military and civilian engagements not only in the United Kingdom but abroad.

The ceremonial aspect of the ‘Beating retreat’ despite now being a more modern aspect, was founded in necessity and historical military routine,initially the beating of the drum was utilised in order to break off fighting and withdraw to the safety of camp as darkness fell,later, its purpose served to signal the closing of the camp gates at the end of the day and called troops back to base for the night. The historical aspect is a truly rich one and shows the importance of this event not only now but in the past.

This remains a significant event for the community in order to show gratitude and support towards the soldiers who work tirelessly in conflicts and for their families who support them. A reception was held in the Indian Army Memorial room and the programme of music was captivating with a display consisting of ‘Marching songs of World War Two’, and a sunset ceremony with an evening hymn.  At the heart of the event lies the Army Benevolent Fund (ABF): The Soldiers’ charity, a charity which supports the families and children of those who have made the supreme sacrifice, the charity website shows the vast impact of their work stating:

“The overall scale, breadth and range of our support is vast. We help very young serving families cope with a sudden bereavement or traumatic loss. We provide wide-ranging support to wounded soldiers, many of whom will need increasing financial assistance for decades to come. We provide help with housing, education and training for employment for soldiers and veterans of all ages. We are there for older veterans and their widows or widowers when they find themselves lonely or isolated.’

The proceeds of this incredible event went towards The Soldiers’ Charity, which will positively impact the lives of so many. The significance of this event is indisputable and is a vital event for not only the community but for a widespread audience.

Sue commented ,“I always feel tremendously proud of these events, their precision and skills in marching and band playing is exemplary, I am so proud of those that serve our country. To think I was able to sit where the Queen usually sits to watch the Beating of the Retreat was a true honour”

Click the link below for more information about The Soldiers’ Charity and the work that they do: https://soldierscharity.org

July Round Up

1st July: The Mayor was asked to speak at an up and coming artists (Amy-Leigh Bird) gallery at the West End Theatre. Sue described her work as ‘unique’ and an ‘inspiration to others’.  Amy-Leigh was excited to host the event describing her work as “allowing nature to create my plates, the elements generate their own details and pigment… I have been exploring the beauty of natural processes by seeing how they create natural patterns and colours without human interference”.

2nd July: The Mayor attended an inspiring awards evening at St. Johns Ambulance in Winchester Great Hall alongside many other Mayors and Chairman. The evening was dedicated to volunteers who had heroically devoted so much of their time to helping others.  http://www.sja.org.uk/sja/default.aspx

Image result for st john ambulance

3rd July: The Mayor attended the 20th Anniversary of Manor Place Care Home. The care home specialises in personalised care and takes special pride in its philosophy of ‘privacy and dignity’, ‘independence’ and ‘freedom of choice’. Sue especially enjoyed her visit today stating that she “took her hat off to the staff and supporters who do so much to enhance the lives of their residents”.  http://www.manorplacecare.co.uk/care-philosophy/

4th July: The Mayor had an interview at BFBS and also visited the Shots Foundation Club.

5th July: The Mayor attended the Duke of Edinburgh Gold awards where young people were awarded their well deserved Gold award by the Lord Lieutenant, representing the Duke of Edinburgh. Sue met “some truly inspirational young people, willing to go above and beyond to learn and support others”.

15th July: Hampshire Day and the inaugural raising of the Hampshire flag as a celebration of Hampshire’s rich history and community. The ceremony was comprised of a speech by H.M. Lord Lieutenant, Nigel Atkinson, as well as the blessing and of the flag alongside a variety of songs such as ‘Home Lads Home’ by Sarah Morgan. She also met with the students and school council of Southwood Infant School later in the day.

25th July: The Mayor visited Knellwood Care Home to attend their annual lunch party where she met a joyous community filled with beautiful people. https://knellwood.co.uk/

Cove Brook Greenway Fair and North Camp Summer Fayre

Cove Brook Greenway Fair

On Sunday the 22nd of June the volunteer group showed their respect to the older people in the community and gave back some of the good they had given throughout their lives. They did this to ensure they know they’re in a safe and fun environment with things they can always look forward to do. Along with this fair other events such as the Bi Weekly is held in which a bingo, raffle, tea, coffee cakes and biscuits are served, along with 40s music and crafts for their enjoyment. In these events people of all ages can volunteer and choose to take part with meets held at Parsonage Farm School on alternate Sunday afternoons. 

North Camp Summer Fayre
On Sunday the 23nd of June the North Camp Matters Fair was held, in which there were stalls for everyone to browse, arena acts including a marching band and bird display. There was also a dog show competition, fun fair attractions and much more family filled fun. The event included displays by: Air Cadet Band, World Eagle Claw Kungfu, NE Hants Taiko Band, Foxes Gym, Gremin Dance, Stagecoach and many more local places. The day in Queens Road recreation ground was organised by the North Camp Matters Community Association to celebrate North Camp and enjoy a day filled with fun.

This Big Lunch- MCP and Grange Junior School and Victoria Day in Aldershot

This Big Lunch – MCP and Grange Junior School

On the 6th of June 2018 a beautiful ‘Big Lunch’ at the Grange Junior school. The event was kindly opened by Sue Carter along with Steve Masterton who was supported by Mayfield Community Partnership, Prospect Estate Big Local, PD Group and Rushmoor Voluntary Services. The dance was filled with excitement; as everyone had participated with the bring & share lunch in which different types of foods were presented. There was face painting, Nepali dancing, Spotlight Dance Group, Beat the Goalie, Farnborough FC Cheerleaders, Messy Church crafts, story time, bingo and a free prize draw for a hamper, with nearly 300 people attending. Sue presented everyone with a short speech and later cut the MCP large cake for everyone to share. The day was filled with fun with such glorious weather, and food that everyone could share and try.    

Victoria Day in Aldershot

On Saturday the 8th of June the Aldershot community came together to celebrate the day filled with colourful activities and fun. The celebrations started at 10am and lasted till 4pm, there were marching bands, Normandy veterans, schoolchildren, and army cadets were one of the many groups parading through the town center. 

More than 6,000 people visited Aldershot across the day, enjoying a day filled with free entertainment. In the Princes Gardens, there were many activities to enjoy with the family including a seaside photo board, sandpits, craft activities, donkey rides, and funfair rides. Later in the day awards were given for ‘Best in Parade and Sue took part and rewarding a few of the winners.

Aldershot Bargain Buys Grand Opening, Child Safety Event, Rotary kids day out and MPTC Awards

Child Safety Event

On Tuesday the 11th of June 2019 a Child safety event was held in the Mayfield Community Center at Totland Close Farnborough. Sue attended the center at 10:30am which is when the children were taking part in the activities. Children from The Grange Junior school and St. Bernadette’s school were there, in which they participated in a range of activities that ensured they were having fun whilst also learning how to stay safe at home, at school or while playing.  

Aldershot Bargain Buys Grand Opening

On Wednesday the 12th of June 2019 Sue Carter attended the grand opening of Bargain Buys in Aldershot, who are a leading variety discount retailer for quality food, toiletries, cleaning supplies, garden essentials and home-ware brands. Sue officially opened the store to the public by cutting the ribbon.   

Rotary Kids Out

Since 1994 each year in June the Rotary Clubs throughout Britain organise a fun-packed day out for children aged 5-13, who may have special needs or if they’re disadvantaged in other respects. The event was held at the Army Rugby Stadium in Aldershot on Wednesday the 12th of June 2019. A range of entertainment such as a bouncy castle, fairground rides, face-painting, a disco, farm animals and various slideshows were provided. Sue was invited to enjoy the magical day out with the children, which was a success as over 700 children and their teachers/carers had attended.The local event was organised by, Aldershot, Ash & Blackwater Valley, Farnborough, Farnham, Farnham Weyside, Fleet, Godalming Woolsack, Hart, Rushmoor, woking and Woking District clubs. 

MPTC Awards Ceremony

On the 12th of June 2019 the Military Preparation College Aldershot held an award ceremony at Browning Barracks. The MPTC’s vision is to provide learning to 14-23 year olds in the UK and support students to reach their potential in their chosen career. The day was lively with high spirits; learners showed some of their skills, as presented in the videos in the link.  

Gurkha Cup

On the 26th of May, 2019, Sue attended the Gurkha Cup celebration, giving a speech on the day acknowledging the hard work placed into the event and presenting the lucky winners with their prizes!

The Gurkha cup is an annual event which was launched in the year 2000, with the first cup being presented by the King of Greece. Since then it has grown in popularity not only amongst the Nepalese community in the UK, but additionally in Europe.  Tamu Dhee (TDUK) is the organising body behind the event, working alongside committed volunteers and supporters.

The day itself is a lively, family event where visitors can enjoy not only the football tournament but a whole host of food stalls and displays including a free- falling parachute display, Tai- Kwan-do, Khukri dance and a live performance by The Band of the Brigade of Gurkhas- who were founded in 1859 as part of the Simoor rifle regiment. The blend of Nepalese culture and contemporary entertainment makes the day enjoyable for anyone who wishes to attend.

 Values of team spirit and  friendship are at the heart of the event, as well as promoting sports to a younger generation, and providing a large social platform in order to help people extend and build meaningful connections. These values can all be seen in the vast array of team displays and the football itself, which all require hard work and teamwork, which is vital to promote to a younger generation.

For several members of the community, the Ghurka cup is an important event,  however on an even wider scale the charity work that they do is an integral aspect. Previously, raising money for victims of the Japanese Tsunami, the Philippines Typhoon- Haiyan, Gurkha Welfare trust and major landslides and flooding in Nepal amongst others. Furthermore, in 2015  £80,000 were raised and donated to help support the victims of the Gorkha Earthquake. 

Sue was delighted with the event and the fantastic community support, commenting “Donations made to charities such as these are vital for ensuring that those impacted by life-altering events can be supported and that as many of those affected can benefit from the fantastic work undertaken here.” 

The atmosphere was light, fun and lively! A hint of competition in the air, with the football game in full swing. The wide array of displays left everyone entertained and put a smile on everyone’s faces.

As part of their impactful charity work TDUK kindly donated £500 towards the charities chosen and supported by Sue.

Tower Hill School 100th Year celebration

The Tower Hill Primary School celebrated their 100th birthday on the 22nd of May 2019, with the day filled with activities. The children were dressed up representing a different decade; every class had been studying a different decade from the past 100 years. There were many outfits from soldiers to superheroes!  

During the morning there were stunning performances ready like singing from Mrs. Smith’s choir and a story regarding Tower Hill through the decades being recited by the full college, written by Miss Dinsdale and Mrs. Cartlidge. 

After the amazing performances, Sue undraped a plaque, this was a ceremonial occasion for Tower Hill School, celebrating one hundred years of relationship and learning. Sue conjointly gave a speech recognizing how wonderful Tower Hill school is on how they teach and educate the youngsters.  

The Academy of Hard Knocks: Funding and Support – 13th to 16th May

In her role as Mayor, Sue works with a number of different charitable and not for profit organisations in order to advise and signpost them to potential funding streams. These include organisations such as The Academy of Hard Knocks, whose founder, Sam Rowe, works tirelessly to support young adults.

Image result for the academy of hard knocks

The Academy of Hard Knocks is a 12-week martial arts programme with training and mentoring to break the cycle of young adults offending. They aspire to change the lives of youths who may have found themselves on the wrong path and wish to change their lives for the better, through mental and physical training. These young adults receive coaching from some of the top athletes and coaches from Britain and also attend lectures from ex-offenders or local authorities to educate them.

More information about The Academy of Hard Knocks can be found here:


For extra information about what the current Mayor of Rushmoor is getting involved with, as well as updates of ways in which you can get involved with your local community fundraising, follow the Mayor on Instagram and Twitter @mayorofrushmoor

June Round Up!

June was another busy month for the Mayor, with summer coming into full swing and local activities around every corner!

On the 13th June Sue attended the Garrison Herald Health Fair, which was held at the Aldershot Garrison Sports Centre. This event was held in order to promote improvements in health and well being in the local community, with free entry to information and demonstrations on how to lead a better lifestyle. There was a wealth of information available, from leaflets on cervical screening provided by ‘Jo’s Cervical Cancer Trust’ to information regarding ‘The Royal British Legion’. It was an immensely helpful event for the local community!

Links to charities discussed:

Jo’s Cervical Cancer Trust – https://www.jostrust.org.uk/

The Royal British Legion – https://www.britishlegion.org.uk

Following this, Sue also attended The Sixth Form College Farnborough’s Art & Design Summer Show 2019 on June 14th. This was an opportunity for the incredibly talented students at the College to show the local community how their creativity has blossomed through their studies. The following week, on the 21st of June the Mayor attended the ‘Step by Step Sleep Out’, a fundraiser in aid of local young people facing homelessness. According to Step by Step’s website, the ‘Sleep Out’ “encourages participants to give up their bed for the night and instead endure the cold, hard floor of Aldershot Town FC’s stadium terraces… It’s a tough night and no one gets much sleep, but participants will be buoyed by an outdoor cinema screening, live music, wood-fired pizzas and fun activities.”

For more information regarding the incredible work Step by Step do within the local community, visit: https://www.stepbystep.org.uk/news/step-by-step-sleep-out-event-set-to-be-biggest-yet/

Later on in the month Sue attended the Farnborough College of Technologies Family Fun Day, an enjoyable event that provides prospective students the opportunity to discover the wide range of courses the college has to offer. The Vice Chairman and Vice Principal showed Sue around the events taking place that day, and it was a truly wonderful experience! Furthermore, Sue attended the Summer Ball which was held at the Vine Centre. With a roaring 20’s theme, the entertainment that night was outstanding with live entertainment, disco, an auction and a raffle in order to raise money to help some of the most vulnerable people within our local community. It was a wonderful night to celebrate as well as to raise further funds for the amazing work done by the Vine Centre. 

June was overall a very busy month, and  the local community was buzzing with the excitement of the summer ahead!