A FAMILIAR name in local politics is set to stand down after serving the public at every level of local authority for over a decade.
Chairman of Stroud District Council Cllr Dennis Andrewartha has served on Gloucestershire County Council for eight years, Stroud District Council for 14 years and currently has 16 years under his belt for Cam Parish Council.
A relatively popular and amiable figure, Cllr Andrewartha has lived in Cam for over 30 years but has seen many exotic and far-reaching places during his work in engineering including Pakistan, India and Jamaica as well as the more local Berkeley Power Station.
Having left his post on the county council last year and with his term at Stroud District Council coming to an end with the elections on May 22, Cllr Andrewartha reflected on his time in local politics with the Gazette.
“I have a strong belief that no councillor is indispensable and I have worked with many councillors who stayed on too long, believing they were indispensable,” he said.
“It is time I enjoy my family more.
“I am pleased with what I have done and I certainly achieved what I set out to achieve originally and a lot more besides because I stayed longer than I expected.”
Despite Cam’s sizeable population, Dennis was incredulous that, 16-years ago, there was not a single swing or play area for children.
Now thanks to his and the council’s work the area boasts several places for families to enjoy, including an increasingly popular skate park.
It was the beginning of a successful career in politics, with Dennis becoming heavily involved in planning issues across the county, including the ongoing debate over the incinerator application in Quedgeley.
He also stood as the Liberal Democrat prospective parliamentary candidate for the Stroud District in 2010 general election, securing over 15 per cent of the vote.
“I am surprised the people of Cam put up with me so long,” he said.
“I am proud of the way I have helped people on planning issues, although I have probably upset as many people as I helped.”
The Spark Hill resident has three children, five grandchildren and one more grandchild on the way and said he was lucky that they all lived within a mile of them all.
His only regret, he said, was seeing the united Kingdom Independence Party (UKIP) increasing in popularity, saying he was opposed to their “racist” views.
“My children are pro Europe, they see their future and in some cases their future jobs in the EU,” he said.
The 66-year-old joked he was now looking forward to several holidays with his wife of 43 years Celia and spending their children’s inheritance.