Thursday, 14 December 2017

Parish councillor steps down after 18 years

A WATLINGTON parish councillor has stepped down after more than 18 years.

A WATLINGTON parish councillor has stepped down after more than 18 years.

Ted Backhouse, 83, said he would miss the council “like mad” after deciding to leave for personal reasons.

“I have enjoyed my time,” he said. “I haven’t always agreed with things but then no one ever does. We have achieved a lot as a council.

“I love Watlington and I think it is a fantastic place. I have never been as happy as I have been since I came here.”

Mr Backhouse moved to Watlington in the Eighties and joined the council in the early Nineties, remaining a member until 2008 when he temporarily left after suffering a heart attack. He returned a year later.

Mr Backhouse, of Orchard Walk, said he was particularly proud of chairing the Watlington Festival and helping improve access to the town hall.

He plans to continue to help out in the parish office a couple of days a week.

Council chairman Ian Hill led tributes to Mr Backhouse at last week’s annual parish meeting. He said: “Ted has been a very active member of the council. He is going to be a great loss to us.”

Councillor Barry Adby and Councillor Rhian Woods both said that he would be “sorely missed”. A minute’s silence was held in memory of Keith Lane, a former parish councillor, at the start of the meeting.

Mr Lane joined the council in the late Nineties and remained a member for more than a decade until he left after suffering a stroke.

He was active in a number of areas during his time on the council.

He was a key member of the sports pavilion project, which was started and carried through to completion during his time as a councillor.

He also had a keen interest in road transport issues and he explored possible solutions to the town’s congestion problems.

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