Patricia Quigley Becomes Mayor of Hammersmith & Fulham

Pledges to make inclusion and equity the centrepiece of her term

New Mayor Patricia Quigley (left) with H&F Leader Cllr Stephen Cowan

June 2, 2023

The new Mayor of Hammersmith & Fulham has said she intends to make ‘inclusion and equity’ the centrepiece of her year in office.

Cllr Patricia Quigley is taking over from Cllr Emma Apthorp after the appointment was confirmed at the Council’s Annual General Meeting on Wednesday (24 May).

She is the former Lead Member for Inclusive Community Engagement and Co-production and a founding member of H&F’s  Disabled People’s Commission.

“Disabled People need to take the lead in planning services to remove barriers and ensure that everyone can be part of a more inclusive society,” she said. “That’s the reason I am sitting here tonight as the newly elected Mayor of H&F.”

You can meet the new Mayor in a YouTube video she made at the end of this article.

A  special ceremony also saw the Freedom of the Borough awarded to women’s safety pioneers – Beryl Foster and Bear Montique – as well as former H&F Council Leader, Barrie Stead.

It the highest honour the council bestows only on a select group of residents, organisations or military groups for their extraordinary service to the local community.

H&F Leader Stephen Cowan said: “What we’re celebrating tonight is people who made a change that, decades later, we’re still living with.”

Freedom of the Borough awardee Beryl Foster
Freedom of the Borough awardee Beryl Foster

Beryl and Bear were honoured for their pivotal role in revolutionising the support system for survivors of domestic abuse.

Born and raised in Ireland, the two founded the UK’s leading women’s organisation Advance in Hammersmith in 1998. The charity forms part of the Angelou service, a multi-organisation partnership that provides advice and support to those experiencing gender-based abuse.

“At the time, there was no local service for anyone experiencing violence at home,” said Cllr Emma Apthorp, H&F Lead Member for Women and Girls and outgoing Mayor.

“The onus fell on survivors, rather than the community. They played a large role in changing the narrative of domestic violence.”

Beryl had previously helped open Hammersmith’s first Women’s Aid refuge, and later set up  Standing Together Against Domestic Violence.

Meanwhile, Bear had started the borough’s first outreach service for people experiencing violence at home. She played a key role in bringing the revolutionary  Duluth Model to the borough, which shifts blame and responsibility away from survivors and to the community.

“I’m accepting this award on behalf of all the brave survivors who’ve come forward and who’ve used Advance’s services, which were shaped by those survivors,” said Bear. “Never stop listening to survivors.”

Freedom of the Borough awardee, Bear Montique

Barrie Stead – who served as the Leader of H&F Council from 1973 to 1978 – was also awarded Freedom of the Borough at the ceremony.

He was dedicated to the borough’s cultural heritage and vibrant arts scene. He helped found Riverside Studios, rebuild the Lyric Theatre in Hammersmith, and acquire Fulham Palace.

These are “institutions that we all enjoy, and we are all proud to call gems in our borough,” said Cllr Kwon, H&F Cabinet Member for Civic Renewal.

Barrie Stead Barrie Stead

Barrie later went on to found Age Concern, now Age UK, a charity which offers vital services to older people and their carers.

“He has been that guiding presence for people who don’t always know how to access the help they need,” said Cllr Patrick Walsh from Ravenscourt ward. “It’s incredibly important that there are champions like that in our community.”

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