Jonathan Chilvers has been a County Councillor for Leamington Brunswick since 2013. He lives in South Leamington with his lovely wife and two young daughters after first moving here when a student at Warwick University. He leads a local homelessness project supporting people to turn their lives around and is part of a lively local church.
Why the Green Party?
"I've always been passionate about seeing a fairer society at local, national and international level. Whether it be working for a living wage for County Council employees or promoting Fair Trade goods.
But it's not just about distributing money more equally - people need to be able to make decisions about their own lives at local level and have time for strong, healthy relationships with their family and community. I joined the Green Party back in 2008 because it was the only party that was serious about distributing power and money as if people and the planet really mattered.
Since that time I have found people in the Green Party to be committed to improving the lives of others, respectful of others and with oodles of integrity - in other words they don't just talk the talk, they walk the walk. And that, to me, is priceless."
Martin has lived in Leamington since the age of nine. He studied psychology at university and now teaches guitar full time in four different local schools as well as in private lessons. He can also be found performing regularly in many local bands and jam sessions in the area. Outside of work Martin also helps out at the Leamington Winter Support Shelter.
Why the Green Party?
“What drew me to them originally was how they were the only ones who took seriously issues such as climate change, social justice and opposing the creeping privatisation of the essential public services that my grandparent’s generation had fought so hard to build.
I had become disheartened with the way other parties approached these matters so the Green Party was the natural logical choice. I joined up as a full member as part of the 2015 pre-election surge. Then one day attended a Green Drinks social event, the following weekend I was out door knocking as part of the election campaign. I felt right at home from the very start and loved the sincerity everyone possessed, and how everybody worked so hard to get things done”
Peggy is orginally from France, but decided to migrate to England 20 years ago. Moving and settling in England was the most difficult and the most exciting things Peggy has done so far! She felt very fortunate to have encountered Warwickshire by chance and absolutely loves living here. Peggy is very proud to have served the public in one capacity or another for over 15 years (Libraries, Schools, Early years).
Why the Green Party?
"I became deeply upset when witnessing the dismantling of the public service first hand and decided that I did not want to be filled by regrets of inactions in twenty years time. I decided to read the manifestos of the main political parties and was astonished to discover that the Green Party had very robust social policies (a £10 minimum wage, introduction of the Citizen Income, taxation of the wealthiest, etc..). I joined immediately and became active with Leamington and Warwick Greens. It was three years ago and I have no regrets!"
Will moved to Leamington 12 years ago from Suffolk and Leamington and Warwick made such an impression that he decided to stay and has lived and worked in the area ever since.
Will is passionate about sustainability, social justice and human rights and is currently studying to become a counsellor. Will is also the chair of the Mid-Warwickshire Amnesty group and a school speaker for Amnesty International. Will stood to become a Green Party District Councillor in 2015 and lost by only 35 votes. He's determined to become both councillor and counsellor.
Why The Green Party?
"My interest in the Green Party came about because I was fed up with what is happening in society and how the main parties are failing the people they were supposed to serve. Things like cuts are having such massive effect on our local services, impacting the very people who need them most. People should always come before profit and never be treated unfairly.
But what really got me interested in taking action locally was the hard work and dedication the Green Party put into local issues, especially listening to concerns of local residents and acting on them. They really proved to me to be a Party working all year-around and not just when they want votes. Doing what I call real politics.
Voted for the Green Party since the first opportunity, which was very early as the Green Party was founded in this area. I have served at every level of the Party and in particular was responsible for policy development in the early 90s when most of the current Manifesto for a Sustainable Society was written. I have stood for election at every possible election, and had we had proportional representation in 1989 I would have been an MEP! I now hope to become a Leamington Town Councillor.
I was educated in Manchester at the High School for Girls then at Bryn Mawr College in Pennsylvania USA followed by French & German languages training in Geneva and Vienna. In 1962 I married Christopher Alty. We spent 3 years in Cambridge where our son James was born while Christopher did his PhD in MagnetoHydroDynamics. Then came to Warwick Uni where Christopher was one of the founding members of the Engineering Department. Engineering Design for Appropriate Technology EDAT) was his legacy as it was accepted by the Senate just before he died. Daughter Alison was born in Leamington, in the bathroom of the house where I still live.
Ian Davison, District Councillor
Ian joined the Scottish Ecology Party in 1984 and has been a Green Party member ever since. He trained as a teacher and taught in state secondary schools for 14 years. Ian is currently a lecturer at the University of Birmingham. Since 1995, Ian has lived in Leamington with his partner of the last 29 years and their two children attended local state schools, but have now 'flown the nest'
Why the Green Party?
“It’s always been obvious to me that the throw-away society was stupid: force companies to build things to last and don’t be suckered by advertising, and then we can enjoy improved quality of life while working less and without trashing the planet… After extensive reading, studying, thinking and debating, I can put this in posh economic terms, too, but have yet to find anyone, including several professors of economics, with a credible critique.
I’ve always found Green Party members to take people as they are, look for positives and to really empathise. Over time, I have come to understand the way that Green Party social policies (e.g. promoting local communities), individual policies (such as Citizen’s Income) and economic policies (like reducing debt) could interact to help create a truly sustainable society with increased health, wealth and wellbeing.”
I have had a varied engineering and arts career and enjoyed work as a metallurgist, as a bookseller, an arts festival director and the developer of the Big Issue across the Midlands. In recent years I have supported Action 21 and many other environmental projects as I have become more concerned about the world in which my young son and other children will grow up.
I have lived in South Warwickshire for 20 years and for the last 15 have provided a home for my son in Lillington and now Warwick. I am committed to building a fairer and healthier society for us all and am directly involved with the development of the Incredible Edible public fruit and vegetable gardens in the district. I run a project to provide winter fuel to people without a gas supply in the Warwickshire villages and during our weekly deliveries enjoy offering free energy saving advice for lower bills and greater comfort.
Why the Green Party?
Joining the Green Party was a natural next step and the opportunity to combine my concern for people and the environment with a desire to continue to work for a fairer society has been fantastic. I have already worked alongside Councillor Jonathan Chilvers and other Green Party colleagues who are clearly aware of the issues and are actively involved in delivering the solutions locally. My work in the community has allowed me to meet many wonderful enthusiastic and supportive neighbours.
Originally from a rural, farming background in Oxfordshire, Tracey has lived in Coventry for 20 years and now in Kenilworth for the last 5. Having studied Engilshat Reading in the late 80's, she then qualified as a social worker at Warwick University. After 15 years, Tracey 'escaped' the profession to return to her roots. She is now self employed, growing, promoting and selling UK native wildflowers plants. Tracey feels very glad to have had the opportunity to experience, study, work, socialize and generally be active and busy with people of all different backgrounds.
Why the Green Party?
Joining the Green Party was a totally naturally progression for me. Professionally and personally, I've come to believe that the stark inequality which exist within families, society, the country and in the world could be a unifying factor. The Green Party is, for me, the political party whichbets recognizes this the and best promotes action to tackle it...together.
Euan is an electric vehicle battery engineer, originally from Ayrshire but now based in Kenilworth. The 2014 Scottish Independence Referendum piqued Euan’s interest in politics, prompting him to become a member of the Scottish Green Party and subsequently the Green Party of England and Wales after moving down south. Euan possesses an encyclopaedic knowledge of green tech and has a tendency to take his work home with him. He is currently in the process of upgrading some of his collection of classic low carbon and electric vehicles, one of which regularly makes the trip up to Scotland for reunions with friends, family and craft beer* with minimal impact on the environment or his wallet.
Why the Green Party
“I was taken aback by the lack of truly progressive voices in English politics, from the swift abandonment of the Conservative pledge to be the “Greenest Government Ever” despite public opinion and overwhelming scientific consensus, to the infamous Labour “Controls on Immigration” mug, to the Liberal Democrats’ betrayal of students regarding tuition fees and failure to shield the UK from the most barbaric of Conservative cuts. Amidst these events, the Green Party were, and still are, the only party consistently exercising logic and common sense in their policies and actions, seeking socially and environmentally just solutions that will improve quality of life for all residents of the UK in order to create a prosperous and outward-looking nation. It is crucial that we can have more hard-working and inspirational MPs like Caroline Lucas in Westminster, cutting through the tiresome pantomime cheering, jeering and filibustering that has somehow become acceptable in the House of Commons and achieving real results for their constituents, nation and beyond. Of course, this can only happen with funding, which membership helps to provide. I’ve chipped in my bit to make it happen.”