|Paralympian David Weir opening Waddon Leisure Centre|
As an ex-pupil of Regina Coeli Primary School it has been a real privilege to represent an area that I grew up in. Many of my school friends and their families still live in Waddon, so it has been an honour to serve these people alongside other Waddon residents, with my colleagues Simon Hoar and Tony Harris.
Waddon is lucky to have a vibrant community and I have many happy memories to take away with me including baking cakes for the Jubilee Party; welcoming the Olympic Torch to St Andrew’s School; helping elderly people clean up their gardens alongside their young neighbours; dancing at the cultural festival as a governor at Aerodrome Primary School; welcoming Boris Johnson and David Weir to the leisure centre and singing along to Gracie Fields with residents at Whitgift House at the Wandle Park open day.
When I joined the Conservative Party sixteen years ago I never thought that I would become a member of Croydon Council at 25 years old. Over the past five years I have thrown myself into being a Councillor and am proud to have helped hundreds of residents solve their council-related issues. I am even prouder to have served during a Conservative administration that delivered a new leisure centre on the Purley Way and also invested in Waddon’s open spaces such as Wandle Park, Duppas Playing Fields and Waddon Ponds.
As one of the Waddon ward members, the Leader of the Council let me take a lead on organising the opening of Wandle Park last year. I wanted local residents to put their mark on this day and invited schools, community groups and local residents to form an organising committee. After six months of planning we managed to organise one of the most successful opening days in Croydon ever, attracting over 7,000 people!
|Opening Wandle Park|
However, even though delivering on your pledges is fun the most rewarding part of being a Councillor is being part of the community and helping out residents to the best of your ability. During the past five years I have helped hundreds of residents from all different backgrounds and walks of life as people look to you to improve their lives and make a difference where possible.
I have made many friends along the way – including a local Green Party activist and will miss helping and solving local residents' problems. It has made me realise how important it is to have a strong community as being a member of one can make such a substantial difference to a person’s life.
Croydon has a bright and prosperous future ahead, with Council tax frozen and a £25 rebate for residents. Every day, from developments such as the Waddon Leisure centre to Westfield, our town is getting stronger.
I wish my successor the best of luck in the forthcoming elections and it is crucial that Croydon remains Conservative as we simply cannot afford Labour to mess up our borough again.