Stratford Press

Councillor ready to start his 10th term

Supportive role of family highlighte­d

- Ilona Hanne

Alot has changed in the district since 1995, but for John Sandford one constant fact has been his role in serving the community as a district councillor.

“I didn’t set out to serve for this long, but I feel I still bring something to the table and still represent our community well.”

With the same number of candidates (six) putting in their nomination­s as there are seats in the urban ward for this year’s October local government elections, John already knows he is going on to serve his 10th term as a councillor.

“I’m pleased. There’s a lot of work to be done with the changes and reforms coming through, so it is good to have a mix of experience­d councillor­s and fresh eyes which is exactly what we have in the urban ward — three of us who have served at least one term already, and three people who are new to the role.”

When it comes to advice or words of wisdom for the new councillor­s, John says it’s simple. “All I would ever ask of any other councillor, new or not, is to have a view and state it. Even if it doesn’t go your way in the end, have an opinion on the things being discussed.”

Since John first took his seat at the council table a lot has changed, he says.

“I think things are much more open now, the community is much more aware of what is happening and how decisions are made.”

In recent years, council has achieved some really positive outcomes for the community, John says.

“I am really proud of the work the council has done in terms of subdivisio­ns. Not just the most recent one, although that is excellent as well, but the earlier one as well.”

When John started in the role, he had young children at home, now he is a grandfathe­r.

“I’ve always known Stratford is a great place to raise a family, and that hasn’t changed.”

It’s thanks to the support of his family, especially his wife Ulinda, that John has been able to spend so much time on council business, he says.

“I really owe them all a huge thanks, Ulinda has always been so supportive.”

 ?? ?? John Sandford
John Sandford

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