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A politics-free village voice

Posted on March 30 2017 at 11:54:42

Charlie

Popular independent councillor Charlie Hotham is standing for the Alvechurch seat in next month’s elections to Worcestershire County Council.

He is hoping he can repeat his result in the district elections when he overcame the Conservative candidate to take the Barnt Green and Hopwood Ward.

Coun Hotham, who is also vice-chairman of Barnt Green Parish Council, aims to become an active voice for Alvechurch in Worcester, where he won’t be bound to merely “toe the party line”.

He told The Village: “I’ve enjoyed my time as a district and parish councillor and feel I have contributed significantly in those roles and there is a lot I can contribute at the county level.

“I stood as a parish councillor six years ago because I wanted to get involved with the community. I’ve always been keen on generating a sense of community in an area because that’s what makes it nice to live there.”

After a “varied career”, which included staring at a galvanised bucket for three years while gaining a doctorate in metallurgy and materials science, working in fledgling hi-tech businesses, running a family haulage company for 12 years, and teaching science at Frankley Community High School, Coun Hotham is now a landlord and works for his wife’s GP practice providing business advice and analysis.

With their sons grown up and making their way in the world – all three following their mother into medicine – he now has time to devote to working for village communities at all levels.

“When I stood for the district, I initially didn’t think I would have a chance, but during the course of the election as I spoke to people it became clear that I did.

“If people understand politics, they will know that members of political parties are duty bound to vote the way the leaders of those parties voted, not guided by their own thought process or even the needs of the people they are representing.

“Each Independent is able to vote in the best interests of the area he or she represents.”

Coun Hotham, who lives in Barnt Green but has many connections with Alvechurch, including representing Hopwood at Bromsgrove, said he decided not to stand in the Beacon county division which covers Barnt Green.

“The current Beacon county councillor works hard for the area regardless of politics, and as an independent we want good representation in all areas, and therefore I am standing in Alvechurch,” he explained.

He pledged to be an active representative for Alvechurch at Worcester by relaying information, even when the answer is not the one people want to hear.

“If you feed back to residents they will understand, but if there is no communication, it is very frustrating for those in the area.”

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