Majid Khan: Doncaster's first Muslim councillor makes history again after becoming Civic Mayor

Doncaster's first Muslim councillor has made history again after being sworn in as the town's Civic Mayor.

Friday, 18th May 2018, 1:25 pm
Updated Friday, 18th May 2018, 1:31 pm
Coun Majid Khan is Doncaster Council's new Civic Mayor. Picture: George Torr

Doncaster's first Muslim councillor has made history again after being sworn in as the town's Civic Mayor.

The role, which is ceremonial and differs from the elected mayor, Ros Jones, raises money for a selected charity and represents Doncaster Council at functions, fundraisers and big events. Coun Khan becomes the first Muslim to serve in the role.

The Bessacarr councillor was chosen by fellow members and will be in the role for 12 months. Hatfield Woodhouse councillor Linda Curran was chosen to deputy Civic Mayor.

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He said he wanted to show off Doncaster as the 'vibrant, forward thinking and embracing borough' it is.

Thanks were paid to outgoing Civic Mayor George Derx who said it had been a 'great honour' and a 'privilege' to serve.

The new Civic Mayor paid tribute to his family, who were watching on from the ballroom at Mansion House.

Addressing fellow councillors, his family and guests, he said: "I am delighted to have been voted the Civic Mayor for Doncaster. What makes it extra special is that I am the first Mayor from an ethnic minority. When my parents left Kashmir to come to England they could have never imagined that one of their sons would go on to be the first citizen of Doncaster.

I often think to myself how all this has became possible, that my peers would embrace me and select me to be the first citizen of Doncaster.

"It's because of the encouragement and guidance of my parents and how they demonstrated the work ethic which has stayed with me through the years - to work hard and to always better yourself.

"The society we live in, whether it be Doncaster or the rest of the UK, if we work hard imagine what we can achieve sometimes people do face barriers.

"But we try hard and work hard, we can overcome those and with a positive mindset, we can achieve anything."

Turning to his family and friends again, he thanked them for the support he's given and revealed his chosen charity would be Samaritans Doncaster.

"They've always been their for me for support and guidance through life. They're the people I can rely on for anything and it's this sense of community which makes this possible.

"As one community Doncaster, we can achieve greatness but it can only happen if we work together.

"I've chosen my charity this year to be Doncaster Samaritans because over the years that sense of community has been eroded and they are often the last port of call for people who in dreadful and horrific situations and that last phone call can be difference between a life lost and a life saved."