THE new Mayor of Worcester took centre stage during the traditional Civic Service and procession this afternoon.

The new mayor, Conservative Councillor Steve Mackay, was accompanied by dignitaries including city councillors, Mayors and chairmen from neighbouring local authorities for the procession from the Guildhall to Worcester Cathedral - watched by crowds that gathered.

The procession, held in brilliant sunshine and containing around 100 people, left the Guildhall, travelling to the Cathedral for the 4pm service, before returning to the Guildhall for refreshments.

"This happens every year, it is very traditional," said Cllr Mackay.

"I'm looking forward to a challenging, but fulfilling year as Mayor.

“I thought it was a fabulous day. The organisation was second to none, and the Reverend Canon Dr. Michael Brierley delivered an excellent sermon which talked about the great value of volunteering – one of my main themes for this mayoral year."

Cllr Mackay joked he had chosen, as part of his mayoral duties, the weather for the procession - but "he wasn't sure if the people of Worcester would believe him".

The 64-year-old, who represents Battenhall on the authority, was elected with cross-party support to the position in May.

He had been married to wife, Alice, for 43 years, and has two daughters and four grandchildren.

The mayor's three chosen charities for his year in office are Onside Advocacy, Victim Support, and Headway Worcestershire.

Labour councillor Jabba Riaz was elected deputy Mayor, putting him in pole position to become Mayor in a year's time.