Member of Holmes Chapel Parish Council
Unlike most of my fellow Councillors, I am a relative newcomer to Holmes Chapel, having lived here for five years now. I have previously lived mainly in Lancashire, apart from a ten year emigration to Derbyshire!
I worked in the textile manufacturing industry and was fortunate to join what became the largest textile group in the UK, managing a wide range of manufacturing operations and eventually becoming Managing Director of a business supplying major retailers in UK and overseas.
I am married to Joan and have a married daughter with two wonderful grandsons. Sadly our son died when he was just fifteen so we know how hard life can sometimes be.
After I retired from business I undertook consultancy work on environmental control systems. I was also invited to join my local Parish Council, serving on it for over ten years, including three years as Chairman. That led me into local politics and I successfully stood for election to Pendle District Council. I was later elected as my Group Leader on the Council and subsequently Council Leader for two years. It was quite a challenging time running a “hung” council and meeting the challenges arising from the financial crash of 2008.
After suffering from a debilitating back condition, I felt unable to continue as a Councillor and ultimately had major surgery to alleviate the condition. As a result we decided to move house. Our search led us through Holmes Chapel one day and we decided to stop for lunch; the rest is history.
When the Parish Council asked for volunteers to help with producing a Neighbourhood Plan I decided to get involved, partly because I had some knowledge of planning procedures and also to become involved with my local community. That in turn led to me standing for the Parish Council four years ago.
During my time on the Council I have been a member of both Amenities and the Village Infrastructure Committees, the latter of which I have chaired for the past two years. I am also a member of the Strategic Planning sub-committee, created to monitor delivery of the Neighbourhood Plan. That in turn led to the formation of a Traffic & Transport Working Group which I also chair, comprising nine community volunteers, that have delivered a comprehensive report to Cheshire East Council on the issues we believe need to be addressed in the village. Another of my tasks is to look after our Speed Indicator Devices (SIDs), including arranging locations and managing the data output.
There is much more to do, such as updating the Neighbourhood Plan, progressing actions on traffic and pedestrian safety issues with Cheshire East and continuing to work on initiatives to maintain and enhance the village.
I enjoy contributing to the Parish Council and the work it does within the village.