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Chairman’s Christmas Message 2022

21 December 2022

As we come together to celebrate the holiday season, I want to take a moment to reflect on the past year and all that we have accomplished together.

This year marked the Queens Platinum Jubilee, a special milestone that we were able to celebrate by lighting the beacon in Rayleigh joining more than 2,000 from around the country. And it was with great sadness that we said Goodbye to Her Majesty in September.

Looking back on the events of 2022, I feel extremely honoured to have been chosen by my colleagues to serve as the Chairman of Rochford District Council.

One of the greatest benefits of this position is having the opportunity to meet the local residents and organisations that work so hard to make a difference around our District. I feel very fortunate and privileged to have been invited to so many events, both locally and around Essex, to support a variety of different ventures.

This year has seen the opening of several new businesses in our community. I am pleased to have attended the opening of Elysium Refill Shop and Katy’s Café Lounge as well as the opening of the exciting, new innovation centre, The Launchpad.

These new business developments in our community are a welcome addition and I wish them all the best in the coming year.

I want to extend a special shout-out to the teenagers involved in the Rochford Teenage Markets. Your hard work and dedication to organizing these events is truly inspiring and I can’t wait to see what you have in store for us.

My Civic Carol Service took place on 16th December at St Andrew’s Church in Rochford. We were fortunate to have a good turnout, with dignitaries from across Essex attending and displaying their best singing voices. I would like to give special thanks to the Chairman’s Chaplain, Rev. Kim Lepley, who led us in a wonderfully engaging, insightful yet entertaining service, and would also like to thank all the volunteers at St Andrew’s Church who worked so hard to make the event so successful.

Over the next six months of my Chairmanship, I will be hosting our annual Holocaust Memorial day event; recognising some of our unsung heroes in the Citizen of the Year Awards; and am looking forward to meeting many more of the amazing people who make me so proud to be Chairman in our brilliant district.

I would be thrilled to be present to support you and join in with celebrating your achievements, so if you would like to invite me to share an event with you, please contact the Civic Officer by email: or complete an engagement form.

Let it be known that the spirit of Christmas is alive and well in our community. We are grateful for the acts of kindness and generosity that we have seen throughout the year, and we hope that this holiday season brings joy and happiness to all.

If you know anyone who has gone above and beyond please help me reward their hard work and nominate them for Citizen of the Year.

I wish you all a very Merry Christmas, and best wishes for a happy 2023!

Cllr Mike Steptoe, Chairman of Rochford District Council