THE NEW mayor of Bournemouth said he hopes be a strong ambassador for the town and leave a lasting legacy for his grandchildren.

Councillor Chris Mayne was officially made mayor during a ceremony at the Pavilion.

The businessman, who was first elected to the council to represent Southbourne West in 2003, said he felt humbled to take up the key civic role.

He said: “Bournemouth, what can one say, it is the type of town that offers something for everyone, young or old, and I will do my very best, in my mayoral year, to be a strong ambassador.”

He added: “I am under no illusions. It will no doubt be extremely challenging at times, but hopefully very enjoyable and rewarding and something to look back on and leave some kind of legacy to my grandchildren.”

As reported in the Daily Echo, the grandfather of six had come under fire after selecting his 11-year-old grandson Noah Mayne-Venables to be the mayor’s scout, overlooking the recommendation made by the Bournemouth Scouting Association.

Yesterday he told his fellow councillors, special guests and members of the public his grandson will share the role with one other scout, Charlie Pike.

During his acceptance speech, the mayor said he will introduce a new awards initiative to “keep councillors on their toes”.

He said at the end of the year there will be awards for the best backbencher, the councillor who asks the best question and the best behaved councillor.

He said: “Most organisations these days seem to have awards and award ceremonies – so why not for councillors?”

The awards will be based upon performances during full council meetings and the winners will be decided by the mayor and the chief executive of the council.

Cllr Mayne’s chosen charities of the year are the Bournemouth Leukaemia Fund, Special Olympics Bournemouth and District, Bournemouth Male Voice Choir, Bournemouth Young Men’s Christian Association and the Amelia-Grace fund for children with life-limiting illnesses.

His chosen themes for the year are sport and music.