John has lived in the area all his life. Married to Rosemary, they have three married children, and four Grandchildren. While farming at Billingsmoor Farm he gained numerous National Awards for farming with wildlife and environment conservation, creating lakes and planting 23,000 trees.
He and Rosemary set up a Farm Study Centre, welcoming thousands of school and university students, teachers and community groups to learn about a working mixed dairy farm. Retired from mainstream farming they now have a small holding, a few sheep and a fishery. John is also a local Insurance Assessor for NFU Mutual.
John has held office as Chairman of Devon County Council and served on numerous committees; currently on Devon Climate Emergency, Adult Health and Care Scrutiny, Adult Health and Care Scrutiny, Corporate Infrastructure and Regulatory Services Scrutiny, Audit Scrutiny, Member Development, and County Farms and Estates,
He is committed to helping others, trying to resolve problems for local people and representing their interests as a County Councillor. He disseminates information by attending Town and Parish Council meetings and a monthly report for each parish. His Ward comprises Cullompton, the surrounding rural areas, Bradninch, Kentisbeare, Blackborough and Butterleigh . He is motivated to do the best he can for the Town and rural areas, helped by his in-depth knowledge of both.
With his DCC Locality Budget grants John enjoys being able to benefit the community for all age groups. Grants to local organisations including sports clubs, youth clubs, schools, churches, library, Family Centre and others, to fund diverse projects, equipment and improved facilities. A Community Fridge and Three food aid groups have been funded. Recently John gave a grant for tidying and planting the roundabout at M5 J28 to improve visibility and appearance. He was instrumental in gaining funding for the Hayridge, Cullompton Community Centre and restoration of the Walronds.
Rural broadband urgently needs upgrading to provide a reliable, faster service for those working or studying at home, for farms and other businesses, to which end, with Neil Parish, he is lobbying Connecting Devon and Somerset and Government. John says “many third world countries have better broadband”!
Passionate about improving the road infrastructure in and around Cullompton and maintaining the rural network of lanes in good order, he has worked hard to get a Relief Road for Cullompton. He continues to lobby for modifications to Junction 28, safe pedestrian and cycle routes across the M5, Railway and River, and believes that infrastructure should be delivered before the Garden Village is delivered.
John is on the Board of Cullompton Community College, a past Governor of Bicton College, past chairman of Devon Farming and Wildlife Group, Tiverton and Cullompton NFU, Devon Young Farmers’ Clubs and represented SW dairy farmers nationally. He is a member of Butterleigh Church and leisure pursuits include Bowling, gardening, walking, the Countryside, and friends…when possible! Family is very important.
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