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I have represented Amesbury West for thirteen years, six as a District Councillor and as a Unitary Councillor for the seven years since that council was formed...
I am the Chairman of the Southern Area Planning Committee, a member of Wiltshire Council’s Housing Board and am active in the Local Youth Network and the Health and Wellbeing Panel. My retirement four years ago has simply allowed me more time to work for Amesbury and Wiltshire.
I was first elected as a Town and District Councillor in 1991. (I am still a Town Councillor, although the District Council no longer exists.) I didn’t really know what I was getting myself into, but quickly realised that common sense, imagination and a little sympathy were all that was needed to make a difference. That and trying to do what most people want rather than what pressure groups and the noisy try to make you do.
I’m currently trying to ensure that Stonehenge School gets a complete rebuild rather than just an extension, that Holders Field is redeveloped for the benefit of the community and not just to offset the costs of the school, and that a genuine by-pass is secured for Amesbury, linking the A303 and the A345 and relieving the pressure on Porton Road, London Road and Workhouse Hill.
Background and Experience
After a Grammar School education, I joined the army, served 22 years with the Royal Artillery and then worked for a further sixteen years for the Ministry of Defence, designing and validating training.
If you are lucky, you can sometimes get it right, and when you’ve been at it for 25 years you can end up with quite a few things you are proud of. Sometimes they don’t even have to succeed for you to be proud. When I was Mayor of Amesbury I tried to start a Youth Council and a Town Partnership – they didn’t quite make it, but it was still worth trying, and I am still trying.
- I secured the funding to make the riverbank at Lord’s Walk wheelchair accessible.
- I helped stop the development of the Stonehenge Visitor Centre at Countess East.
- I stopped the railway station site being developed for mixed use and eventually saw a supermarket open there. (And without the permission for Tesco there would be no Lidl, Aldi, B+M or Home Bargains. No Hopper Bus and no cycle-way to Bulford, either.)
- I pushed until the Amesbury Youth Cafe was set up.
- I found funding for the Blick Mead archaeological dig, which established that Amesbury is the oldest continuously occupied settlement in Britain, and I was involved with setting up the History Centre.
For sixteen years I have been a regular helper at the Redworth Club, a club for people with learning difficulties or recovering from mental illness. (I don’t have much choice, my wife Vera runs it.) My association with the has made me aware of the numbers of vulnerable people who live in our community and from that directly to my involvement with the Health and Wellbeing Panel.
Personal and Family Background
I celebrate my 40th Wedding Anniversary this year and have two adult children.
I have spent a lifetime serving my country, first in and then with the Army. Amesbury Town, Salisbury District and Wiltshire Councils have allowed me to continue that service at a more local and personal level. When it comes down to it, I just want to do what I can to make things better for everybody.
Help and Advice
If you are having problems with the ‘system’ write, text or email, explaining your difficulties and giving a telephone number I can use to contact you, and I will be in touch within working three days. I cannot promise solutions, but I may be able to help.