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© Somerford Keynes Parish Council and contributors 2014-9
Somerford Keynes Parish Council
Parish Councillors elected on May 2nd In alphabetic order. Click on the underlined councillors names below to read their statement, or just scroll down to read them all. This page will be removed in a few weeks. If you wish to contact a councillor, the clerk Wendy Cartwright can provide contact information. ( This website is not secure, so we do not provide a contact form) Elsey, Richard Keegan, Mandy Rigby, Michele Sleeman, Roger Stradling, Angela Valentine, Graham Whitwell, John Richard Elsey Maggie and I and our 4 boys have lived at The Old Vicarage since October 2005. During that time we have seen our boys grow up and we have run our successful business locally for the last 15 years.   I have acted as Chair of Governors at Sapperton School from 2008 until 2013 and been an active manager and coach for youth cricket at Cirencester Cricket Club. I now have some more time to devote to our local village community and feel my general background and experience could be beneficial to the Parish Council. John Whitwell Ann and I have lived at The Old Post Office for 20 years. For the previous 27 years we lived and worked at the Cotswold Community, where I was Principal from 1985-99. I have been retired for almost 5 years and until recently have been a trustee of 3 charities (the Gloucestershire Counselling Service, where I was Chair of Trustees, the Mulberry Bush School and the Planned Environment Therapy Trust). For the past 12 years I have been developing a website (www.johnwhitwell.co.uk) which contains much material about the therapeutic care of children and young people. I was co-opted onto the Parish Council 18 months ago and have also been a member of the Village Lake Committee. Graham Valentine We chose Lower Mill because of the calmness and beauty of the environment and surrounding area, when we returned to the UK after nearly 30 years abroad. We moved into Lower Mill in April 2018. I see serving as a Parish Councilor as an opportunity to contribute some of my time and energy to maintaining the things that make this part of the world special as well as helping me integrate into the life of the Parish. A Londoner by birth I have lived and worked in Switzerland, the Unites States and Asia mainly  in China, initially as a senior manager for a US multinational and for the last 20 years as an entrepreneur and co-founder of a development consultancy. My personal interests are mainly sporting, I sail at South Cerney and like to cycle whenever I can. In addition to sports I also mentor young people who want to start their own businesses. I have found his to be particularly rewarding. My wife is an avid bird watcher. My grandchildren really enjoy this part of the world and I hope that their grandchildren will be able to do the same. Angela Stradling We (Duncan, myself and Jasper, our Springer Spaniel) moved to Somerford Keynes in September 2014 once our two children had embarked on their own adult adventures, one at University and one working and settled in London. We’d lived in Berkshire for over 20 years but became disillusioned with the rat race and endless housing developments that were emerging. We’d always liked the village and we were familiar with the area as we had owned one of the lodges on Windrush Lake in the early 2000’s when the children were small – we had enjoyed many happy weekends in The Cotswolds. We’ve immersed ourselves into village life and as luck would have it, Duncan secured a role at Nationwide in Swindon soon after we moved here. For many years, I’ve been self-employed as a HR & Leadership Development Consultant and as most of the companies I work for are global, I have the flexibility to frequently work from home. Recently, I’ve reduced my work commitments and so feel I have some time and capacity and genuine passion to support the work required of a Parish Councillor. Mandy Keegan I moved to Shorncote  in 2008 and have lived here happily ever since.  I have four children and four grandchildren, who do not live in this area but who visit me very often! I thought it was a good idea to apply to be on the Parish Council, as there were no other representatives from our village. I have never been on a Parish council before and I thought it would be a good opportunity to get more involved locally and help in any way I can in both Shorncote and Somerford Keynes. I am self -employed and mainly manage property and my small farm of 30 acres. I have cottages which I rent out and 2 small stable yards. Before coming to Shorncote,  I used to live on a sheep farm in the wilds of Cumbria. In my spare time, I play tennis, love walking, riding and fishing.  I also spend a great deal of time in my garden. Michele Rigby I have lived in Somerford Keynes with my husband for 6 years during which time we have immersed ourselves into village life and have made many good friends.  I have been a Parish Councillor for 4 years and have actively involved myself in the many varied matters that the Parish Council deals with.  I'm also on the Village Lake Management Committee.  Although I am retired I keep busy with Pilates in the Village Hall, am a member of one of the village Book Groups,  join the 'Ladies Village Supper' groups when I can, and support many other village activities. Roger Sleeman Diana & I have lived in SK for 40 years and been immersed in village life for all that time. I am a retired Senior Check Captain with British Airways. We initially lived at Mead House, next to the pub, until we did the conversion at West Manor Barn near the Church.  Because of an unexpected vacancy on the Parish Council shortly after we arrived, I became a Parish Councillor and have been so ever since with 15 years as Chair. Much has happened in the Parish over those years with which I have been directly involved. Amongst other things I have represented the Parish on the Cotswold Water Park Joint Committee, set up and became Chair of the Cotswold Water Park Society (prior to Dennis Grant), been Chair of the Village Hall Committee, organized social events, been involved in the History Group and help maintain the Churchyard.