Richard Morgan - Parish Councillor and Chair
My wife Debra and I moved to Sherborne St. John at the end of 1999 having previously lived in the Reading area. I speak for both of us when I say that looking back, we little did we realise then our good fortune in having made the move to SSJ. When living in Reading we knew our immediate next-door neighbours, in SSJ we made enduring friendships throughout the village within weeks of moving in and that process continues to this day.
I retired at the end of 2020 and am now working my way through the 'to do' list that Debra has diligently prepared for me.
I've been both an SSJ Parish Councillor and Chair since 2012. In that time the Parish Council has invested heavily in the infrastructure of the village and in parallel has worked to put the finances of the village on a sound footing.
I am extremely fortunate in having a very experienced set of fellow councillors to work with, all with disparate and valuable skills, and a village population that actively participates when called to arms – long may it remain so.
I really enjoy my council role as I get to meet the heart of the village, the parishioners that make Sherborne St John the great place it is to live, work and play in. We also have benefit of the Village Hall and the Chute where various and many village-based activities are centred around.
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Linda Agnew - Parish Councillor and Vice-Chair
I have lived in the village since 1959 and have many happy memories growing up in the village and attending the village primary school. After secondary school in Basingstoke a few years later I married in the village church. Although I lived in Basingstoke then for a few years my parents continued living in the village and as I was frequently here, I feel as if I never really left.
After my mother passed away I moved back into the house I had grown up in with my husband, our 2 children and one dog. When my children had grown up, I wanted to take part in village life more, so in 2001 following an advert in the Villager I applied to join the Parish Council as a co-opted member until I was formally elected at the next elections and I have served on the Parish Council since.
When the Parish Council reorganised responsibilities I joined the planning committee later becoming Chair and more recently Vice Chair of the Parish Council.
My main interests on the Parish Council have been in planning and housing having worked within the construction industry and housing sector for many years. I have seen many changes in the village and I am keen to see the quality of life we all enjoy maintained. We do need to change in the future, but it needs to be managed so it is how, what and when we want it. I am looking forward to the next few years working with my fellow councillors to maintain the village lifestyle we have as I feel it is really special. We do have to accept some change but we need to be able to control it and only have what we all want.
In addition to my duties on the Parish Council, I also became a Parish representative on Basingstoke and Deane's Standards Committee who monitor complaints from the both the public and other councillors since 2008.
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Carl Davies - Parish Councillor and Finance
I moved into the village in the summer of 2015 along with my wife and daughter. Having lived in the Midlands but with my job, as an IT Director, centering around Newbury, Reading and London for many years, we finally decided to make the move down south. The key things that attracted us to Sherborne St John were it's location but also the fact that it is a really friendly village with a thriving community, it's own identity and excellent facilities. Saying that, it was having a pub 100 yds from the house that ultimately swung my decision!
Not wanting just to live here but to be part of that community and to help maintain it, when I saw the article in The Villager towards the end of 2015, that the Parish Council was looking for a new councillor, I jumped at the chance. Even though I was new, I was accepted and was co-opted until the elections in May 2016, where I was elected for a full term. This is my opportunity to get involved, keep learning more about the village and give something back.
I am committed to keeping the special quality of life we all enjoy in Sherborne St John.
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James Rowley - Parish Councillor and Planning Lead
We moved to the village in 2019, having previously lived in North Waltham.
Until recently I worked as Planning & Development Surveyor at the Borough Council. Having retired in 2021, I wanted to get more involved in local community activities and issues, so decided to apply to join the Parish Council.
As I have also worked as qualified town planner since 1987, I hope that some of my planning and development experience can be useful to the parish council on planning matters. Since the 90s, from when I also worked on community regeneration projects I hope that I can support keeping and improving the range of community facilities in the village. We live in lovely area here with exceptional access to the countryside and nearby woodland. Sherborne St John has a great range of local facilities and retains its identity as a separate village, both are important elements of which should be protected and enhanced in the future.
On the social side, we enjoy walking our dog round the village and eating out locally. My hobbies include music/collecting records, gardening, walking, reading (including for the book club) and I am interested in conservation and old buildings. Before the pandemic, we ran the Vintage Soul Sounds Mobile roadshow and with my wife we are involved with Community Radio..
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Jane Bechelet - Parish Councillor
I was born in the village to my family in the Swan Public House. I married a local boy and had three lovely children. Having divorced, I remarried to Nigel, who was also born in the village, and moved back to Sherborne St John.
Having always worked in retail in Basingstoke, now I have retired I work as a volunteer in a Charity Hospice Shop, and help in local organisations. In my spare time I enjoy walking, gardening and swimming.
Sherborne St John is a lovely village and I am so pleased to be co-opted to our Parish Council and I hope to use my role to help keep it the special place it is to both me and all of you.
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Melanie Camilleri - Locum Parish Clerk and Responsible Financial Officer
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