Cllr Neil Reeve

Neil Reeve is a highly experienced chartered engineer with 40+ years’ experience. He was previously chair of an industry division of ISO, the prestigious international standard-setting body. His experience will be invaluable in helping the council solve its infrastructure deficits. He is a councillor at High Easter Parish Council and at Uttlesford District Council. In his spare time he volunteers for nature conservancy causes.

“It’s very straightforward. I’ve become increasingly frustrated by the current district council. They are driven by Westminster policy. I stood because I believed that it is time for a change. It’s very important that residents are listened to. We need local residents’ views, local decisions, and more local infrastructure.” Neil Reeve

WardRolesAbout/BioContact

Council Roles

Councillor at High Easter Parish Council, Councillor at Uttlesford District Council

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Read full councillor profiles, declarations of interest, portfolio ownership and committee membership on specific council websites

Where you live and how long you’ve lived in the area?

I live in High Easter with my wife, Loes. We’ve were lucky to buy our home in High Easter about 20 years ago. Since my retirement in 2012 I have become increasingly involved in village, parish and local issues. Prior to this we lived and worked all over the world, including Malaysia, South Korea, Denmark, New Zealand and The Netherlands.

Our three children each have their own families (giving us 5 grandchildren in total) and lead diverse lives. One lives in Kent and works for Kent County Council. One lives in Holland and works in the University of Utrecht Library. One is currently working for Oxfam in Myanmar.

Any councillor or political experience you may have?

I am a member of the High Easter Parish Council. In this respect I have been putting energy into the Stansted Airport issues, village affordable housing and local broadband. I have learned that local infrastructure issues must not be ignored.

Any work details that you may want to highlight that add to your experience?

I am a Chartered Engineer with approximately 40 years of international experience. I worked with Royal Dutch Shell until I retired from them in 2012. For the first third of my career I worked as a Structural Engineer designing, building and maintaining offshore platforms. Thereafter I developed Shell’s system of specifications and standards for all their operations worldwide. In this capacity, I became chair of the committee in the International Organization for Standardization (ISO) responsible for international standards the oil and gas industry. I still have this role till mid-2019. I have learned how to listen to very diverse groups and lead the parties to an agreement (a consensus standard).

Are you involved in any community or residents’ groups, boards, charities, or volunteering?

I’m a director, trustee and treasurer of the East of England Apples and Orchards Project (EEAOP). This is a charity, with a trading arm (i.e. under Charities Commission and Companies House), whose aim is the collect and conserve the region’s heritage fruit trees; and get these (re-)planted throughout the region.

I am also a treasurer, and committee member of the Essex Beekeepers Association (EBKA) (Braintree Division).

What would you like to achieve as a councillor?

It’s very straightforward. I’ve become increasingly frustrated by the current district council. They are driven by Westminster policy. I believe that it is time for a change. I’ve got the energy to put into this. It’s very important that we listen to residents, and I’ll be going out of my way to listen to get their views. We need local residents’ views, local decisions, and more local infrastructure.

I am new to district council politics, but I am a parish councillor. Following the development of the UDC Local Plan and the application for the expansion of Stansted Airport, it has become apparent to me that the current administration doesn’t properly address essential infrastructure issues. I want to see this behaviour reversed.

During my working life, I used a motto “Cooperation not Competition”. I think that this can also apply in local politics.

Why did you stand for Residents for Uttlesford?

I have been impressed that in a short time Residents for Uttlesford has made an impact: not only in Saffron Walden, but also at Uttlesford District Council. In order to make a larger impact, R4U needs to control the UDC. I hope therefore that with the support of residents, who are not happy with some of the recent decision-making, R4U can win sufficient councillors to gain that control.

The key point is that R4U is a party for local issues, not national ones. It can therefore be more agile to steer the district council in a direction that residents in the Uttlesford want, rather than as directed by a Westminster-based party.

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    Cllr Sandi Merifield

    Sandi Merifield is very active in Stebbing and has served on Stebbing Parish Council for 12 years. She is volunteers in the village store and is the local coordinator of the Poppy Appeal Collection. She is one of the 2 R4U Uttlesford District Councillors for the Felsted and Stebbing ward, and chairs the UDC Planning Committee.

    “I believe in listening and working with the community, fighting for the rights of residents and aiming to find the balance between protecting our communities and enhancing our children’s future.” Sandi Merifield

    WardRolesAbout/BioContact

    Council Roles

    Council for Voluntary Service – Uttlesford (UDC), Councillor at Stebbing Parish Council, Councillor at Uttlesford District Council, Housing Board (UDC), Local Plan Working Group (UDC), Planning Committee (UDC)

    More Information

    Read full councillor profiles, declarations of interest, portfolio ownership and committee membership on specific council websites

    Sandi says:

    I live in Stebbing with my husband Peter, our two dog and two cats. We moved here nearly 25years ago with our three children and have counted ourselves lucky ever since to be part of this community.

    I have served on Stebbing Parish Councillor for over 12 years including on most of its committees. I have spent a number of years working on local planning issues, including representing the local community for the proposed West of Braintree Garden Community. I have also worked collaboratively and successfully on gaining an ‘Asset of Community Value’ for Andrewsfield. At UDC I chair the Planning Committee.

    Stebbing has the community run Village Stores where I volunteer once a week enjoying meeting members of our community and passing customers. I coordinate the Poppy Appeal Collection annually in Stebbing and am a member of the Stebbing Fete organising committee. Having had a career in Education in both secondary schools and colleges I am now a governor at a local Nursery & Primary school.

    We all love and appreciate living in this area and whilst I do accept the need for new homes and change, I truly feel that the communities of Felsted and Stebbing are not being listened to with regard to what communities want.

    I believe in listening and working with the community, fighting for the rights of residents and aiming to find the balance between protecting our communities and enhancing our children’s future.

    I have long believed that National party politics should not play a part in local democracy. Local issues need to be addressed by a locally focussed party that understands and supports local interests. I believe that R4U is, by reorganising how UDC is structured and using the best skills available. By working together with our communities we will achieve this.

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      Cllr Judy Emanuel

      Judy is a Newport District and Parish councillor who is very involved in her community, fundraising and serving on various PTA groups. As part of her work as a parish councillor she’s successfully defended against speculative development at appeal, and helped drive the Newport, Quendon and Rickling Neighbourhood Plan.

      “I’m excited to represent our villages at UDC. As Vice Chair of Newport Parish Council I have gained valuable experience and success with planning applications and appeals over the last five years.” Judy Emanuel

      Judy Emanuel has a degree in Industrial Information Technology. Her career spans from IT start-ups, recruitment, IT consultancy to financial services – and she is also an event florist in her spare time.

      She lives in Newport with her family.

      WardRolesAbout/BioContact

      Council Roles

      Councillor at Newport Parish Council, Councillor at Uttlesford District Council

      More Information

      Read full councillor profiles, declarations of interest, portfolio ownership and committee membership on specific council websites

      Judy Emanuel has a degree in Industrial Information Technology. Her career spans from IT start-ups, recruitment, IT consultancy to financial services – and she is also an event florist in her spare time. She lives with her family in Newport where she’s very involved in the community. She’s been an active member of the Friends of Newport Primary School for 10 years, and was previously chair of the charity. She’s also a member of the Newport Parents Association of Joyce Frankland Academy.

      Judy serves on the Parish Council and Uttlesford District Council. She says she joined R4U and became a councillor because of a deep concern over the volume of speculative housing development in the area with no infrastructure to support it. Over the past five years on the council she’s tracked and documented the scale of development in the area and been responsible for drafting planning application responses.  She’s represented residents at planning appeals, where as part of a team she’s successfully prevented over 200 houses in Newport. She’s also lobbied Essex County Council and Uttlesford District Council to mitigate the impact of any development that has happened.

      Judy has been a key member of the team responsible for the delivery of the Newport, Quendon and Rickling Neighbourhood Plan and has supported the parish council with online communications.

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        Cllr Garry LeCount

        An experienced entrepreneur in the media industry, Garry has been a senior executive for companies including EMI, Carlton TV and ITV. He is one of the two Elsenham and Henham district councillors and has served on Henham parish council Since 2015. He has lived in Henham for more than 35 years.

        “In 2017 you trusted Petrina Lees and I with your district council vote. Since then we’ve worked as a team to protect and enhance village life. We’ve dealt with many local issues, such as the road resurfacing outside the Elsenham shops, travellers, railway crossings and highway issues including speeding.” Garry LeCount

        At UDC Garry is a member of the Investment Committee, where he is able to scrutinise council investments using his significant career experience in buying and selling media companies.

        Garry is also Vice Chair of the UDC Scrutiny Committee. I will allow him to monitor of district’s new Local Plan as it progresses over the current council term. He says that it is his “objective to get a fair and sound plan that will be acceptable to all and protect our villages and towns from unsustainable mass development.”

        WardRolesAbout/BioContact

        Council Roles

        Councillor at Henham Parish Council, Councillor at Uttlesford District Council, Essex Police, Fire and Crime Panel (UDC), Investment Board (UDC), Planning Committee (UDC), Scrutiny Committee (UDC), Standards Committee (UDC), Stansted Airport Advisory Panel (UDC)

        More Information

        Read full councillor profiles, declarations of interest, portfolio ownership and committee membership on specific council websites

        Garry LeCount is an experienced entrepreneur in the media industry, and has been a senior executive for companies including EMI and Carlton TV and ITV. He and his wife have lived in Henham for 36 years.

        He is one of the two Elsenham and Henham district councillors and serves on Henham parish council. At Uttlesford District Council he is a vice chair of the Scrutiny committee that brings to account the Councils decisions that fall below the standards that residents expect. He is also a key member of the council’s Investment Committee. He is also a member of both the Stansted Airport Community Trust and Uttlesford Transport Forum.

        At Henham Parish Council his responsibilities include highways, footpaths, web site and a new local information brochure. He was instrumental in closing a dangerous railway pedestrian crossing in Henham and as a district councillor in the resurfacing of the road outside the shops in Elsenham. He works to continue to bring positive changes to local issues by driving them through UDC and ECC.

        Elsewhere in the ward he serves as a committee member on the PPG (Patient Participation Group) at Elsenham Surgery.

        Garry is very concerned about unsustainable mass-homebuilding in the villages. In 2018 he voted to submit the Uttlesford Local Plan to Government, to stop uncontrolled additional housing and expansion in Henham, Elsenham and the rest of the district.

        Outside of the village he has built a successful career as a serial managing director and senior executive in the music and video industry, with leadership roles in companies such as EMI and Carlton TV and ITV. He currently works as Financial Director for his son building a group of successful media companies.

        He has a daughter with two children, and when not working he enjoys golf, music history, and being with his young grandchildren.

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          Cllr Geoff Bagnall

          Geoff Bagnall is an Uttlesford District and Takeley Parish councillor. Geoff is committed to creating greater local community involvement in shaping the future of Uttlesford. At UDC he chairs the strategic Local Plan working group.

          “I believe we need local representation at Uttlesford rather than the mainstream political parties if we are to secure the proper future for our communities. There is great support for local decisions on the doorstep.” Geoff Bagnall

          WardRolesAbout/BioContact

          Council Roles

          Councillor at Takeley Parish Council, Councillor at Uttlesford District Council, Governance, Audit and Performance Committee (UDC), Investment Board (UDC), Local Plan Working Group (UDC), Planning Committee (UDC)

          More Information

          Read full councillor profiles, declarations of interest, portfolio ownership and committee membership on specific council websites

          Geoff Bagnall moved to Takeley in 2009 and has been a long-serving parish councillor and latterly an Uttlesford District councillor.

          He says “I am absolutely convinced that we need strong representation at a local level to ensure we are able to build the community in the right way. I believe we need it to be LOCAL representation at Uttlesford District Council rather than the mainstream political parties if we are to secure the proper future for our communities.

          Geoff has spent his career in the banking and finance sector. During that time he has held various roles, most of which have required him to look at making improvements to processes and implement organisational change.  He says “To help me achieve success in these roles, one of the key capabilities has been the ability to communicate and drive consensus across teams, as that’s the way you get things done.  To do that I have built up a large network of relationships, which you need to work through complex problems with a number of stakeholders.”

          These core skills of communication and network building will stand Geoff in good stead to help resolve the many issues at Uttlesford District Council and Essex County Council.

          Locally he is particularly keen to ensure that planning decisions are taken for the benefit of the district as a whole, and that they include all infrastructure provisioning at the same time, for example, schools, medical centres, roads and utilities. He said he remembers once asking a now former Conservative District Councillor about the lack of school places when planning decisions were made at Uttlesford District Council. Geoff said “The Councillor replied that schools are the responsibility of Essex not Uttlesford District Council”. Geoff says he disagrees and believes that responsibly cannot be shirked. He believes that things like school places should be “very much part of planning decision making and that deciding in isolation is to the detriment of existing communities.

           

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