Call for new residents to be part of community
The chairman of Whittington Parish Council is keen to encourage residents of the parish’s new and growing estates to be part of a “cohesive” community that is not just about the long established village.
Steve Burrows was re-elected to his position at the parish council’s annual meeting, continuing his keenness to serve the public first shown during his former career as a senior police officer.
The Birmingham-born 63-year-old moved to Whittington in 1996 and will have been married to Sue for 37 years in August.
The couple have two daughters, Hayley and Victoria.
Mr Burrows joined West Midlands Police in 1983 and transferred to Warwickshire in 2002.
Following the Warwickshire/West Mercia Police alliance he worked at the Hindlip police headquarters during his last two years of service, retiring in 2013.
He was uniform and detective in various roles and ranks and trained as a Senior Investigating Officer, Firearms Commander and Public Order Command among several roles.
As a Chief Superintendent from 2002 he commanded the northern half of Warwickshire and was Head of CID and Operations for five years.
Since retirement he has worked part time for the Home Office in communications data.
He said: “I have chaired a lot of meetings, which helps with the parish council.”
He added: “I was aware of the parish council during my police service but simply did not have the time to get involved, between long days, long commutes and being on call.
“I think that when one has served the public there is still a desire to carry on, so that, together with a determination to complete the very long running hall replacement saga - first mooted in the late 1990s - together with an interest in Whittington are the reasons I joined.”
He went on: “The challenges, apart from the hall project, are and have been, in the wake of the households nearly trebling in number, and the age profile moving rapidly downwards, to try and form a cohesive parish rather than it just being the Whittington village.
“To this end I am very keen to involve residents from the new estates of Wildmore and Whittington Walk.
“I always try to see the opportunities offered by the new estates and the joining up of the areas historically cut in two by Swinesherd Way with new footpaths and the footbridge are a real step forward, as is the increased precept income, which enables the council to look at new ways to serve the community.”
He explained: “Like everything, there are ups and downs in being a councillor and chair but it is personally rewarding and I’m pleased to be able to use some of the skills and training from my career for the good of my local community.”
He added: “I think it is very important to engage younger people in the work of the council as they are the future and it is important that their ideas and needs are integrated into future plans.
“We are not by any means there yet but we are putting the structures in place and taking first steps towards that goal.
“I think that parish councils should not be dominated by retired people – there needs to be a healthy mix. That goes for diversity as well.”