I hope you dusted off your best china teacups and cut fresh cucumber for your sandwiches and raised your cup of tea to Her Majesty in celebration of her 70 years of service to the Commonwealth this weekend.
The length of service of our Queen is something to be marvelled at. The absolute dedication, commitment and self-sacrifice involved in holding such an all-consuming role must be acknowledged, even if you're not a big fan of the royal household. The personal integrity and strength shown by Her Majesty is inspiring.
One of the ways in which New Zealand shows respect is with the celebration of the Queen's Birthday Honours, where those most deserving of recognition for service to their community and country are recognised.
Today, the Queen's Birthday Honours list will be released, and I (along with many others) will be watching eagerly to see who has made the final list. I know that each name on that list represents a Kiwi who deserves recognition for going above and beyond in their industry, community, or field of service. I warmly congratulate each and every one of those recognised today.
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Whangarei District Council will also be celebrating outstanding members of our community, with the 2022 Civic Honours Awards later this year. We've received deserving nominations, and now the deliberations on the awards recipients begin. While not every nomination will be successful, there is no doubt in my mind that every name submitted for consideration is deserving of an award. The names we've received have touched the hearts and minds of their communities over a long period of time, they've made a true difference to the lives of others, and through their own generosity of spirit they've made our district a better place to be.
The past couple of years have proved challenging for our Civic Honours events, with our 2021 recipients having to forgo the usual celebrations due to Covid-19, instead having more-personal celebrations with their closest family members or friends. Some preferred that style. Hopefully, this year we will see a return to our usual celebrations, a chance for us to properly acknowledge the hard work of our awards recipients, up on the stage and in the limelight where they belong.
I hope you had a great long weekend, taking the chance to rest and recover after what has been a turbulent start to 2022. I believe we should use all the rest we can get at the moment! Luckily, for the first time we can look forward to another public holiday, with our first Matariki long weekend starting on Friday, June 24.
This makes June the perfect month to rest, relax, slow down, reflect on the past few months and enjoy whānau time with your loved ones in the spirit of Matariki. Enjoy everyone!