I was born in the ward I have represented since 2001. My father was a builder’s labourer and my mother was a cleaner. I attended Battle School from 1954 to 1966 leaving with one GCE. My first job was as a designer in the studio of one of the town’s major employers, Huntley Boorne & Stevens Ltd.
Between 1976 and 1982 I lived and worked in Derbyshire where both of my daughters were born. In 1982 I moved back to West Reading where I have continued to live. Before being made redundant, at the age of 50, I was Pre-press Manager for the LINPAC Metal Packaging Group.
Both of my daughters attended local schools, Wilson Primary and Meadway Comprehensive. After leaving Meadway they both went to Reading University where they earned their degrees. My eldest daughter works for the Prudential and became a councillor for Battle Ward in 2010. My youngest daughter works as a teacher at one of the town’s primary schools. My wife Dorothy was a Deputy Head Teacher before taking up the post of Childcare Services Manager at Reading Borough Council until she retired in 2011.
I was elected councillor for Battle ward in 2001 but before that I spent eleven years running Battle ward Labour Party.
In 2007 I became the Mayor of Reading. This was not bad considering my family background and the fact that when I joined the Labour Party in 1990 I said I would only deliver leaflets
In 2011 I gained a BA (Hons) degree in Graphic Design (visual communication, media interaction).
I will never forget where I came from and I will never stop learning.