Chartered Accountant Neil Hargreaves has lived with his family in Newport for more than 25 years, where he is a very active member of the community.
“I am working to implement better policies to enhance and develop our district, to make the best of the mistakes already made, and support our local communities.” Neil Hargreaves
Neil has been the one of the district councillors for Newport since 2015. His accountancy background makes him an invaluable member of the R4U team, particularly when it comes to Council finances and monitoring its major investments.
- Uttlesford District Newport Ward (Councillor)
Originally from Lancashire, Neil Hargreaves has lived in Newport for more than 25 years and his three children went to both Newport schools. He has used his accountancy skills to serve the community in various roles including Treasurer of the Friends of St Mary’s Church and Treasurer of the Newport Scouts. He is a regular contributor to the three village magazines in the Ward, and is an administrator of the popular Newport Newsline Facebook group. He is chair of the steering group for the Newport, Quendon & Rickling Neighbourhood Plan and is active on planning and local community concerns.
After qualifying as a Chartered Accountant, Neil moved with his wife to Kenya, where their son was born. After returning to London he worked for a large accountancy firm and then in the insurance industry. He managed a large accounts department, IT projects, and outsourcing contracts, and was Treasurer of a reinsurance broker. After moving to Chelmsford and then Newport, Neil commuted to London and to Norwich. During this time his wife worked as an Occupational Therapist and in a dispensary in Saffron Walden and Addenbrookes. Now retired, Neil’s final accountancy position was with a US balloon manufacturer in Bishops Stortford.
Neil is a keen photographer, is a member of CPRE, and is out every day walking his beagle around the villages in the ward.
Our area is often shown in survey results as being one of the best places to live in the country. Neil believes that development, both commercial and housing, can enhance the district if well planned and coordinated with good infrastructure and the services needed to support a larger population.
But he considers that the lack of a Local Plan, which should have been in place in 2011, has caused serious damage to our towns, villages and rural areas.
Neil says “Residents’ strenuous efforts to reform these decisions have had some success, but the Westminster party politically driven system remains unchanged as do the small core of councillors who run it. I therefore stood for election as a district councillor for the Newport ward in 2015, and was elected as one of the 2 ward councillors. I immediately set to work to sort out issues raised on the doorstep and has been able to implement a new speed signs, a major road sign project to try to prevent the frequent bridge strikes in Newport, and an extension to a 30 limit, to protect a new housing estate, has also been agreed.”
Neil and fellow councillor Anthony Gerard hold weekly councillors’ surgeries in Dorrington’s in Newport, are active on the local Facebook groups, and attend the parish council meetings in the three villages in the Ward