I was educated at Orton Longueville Grammar School and the University College of North Wales, Bangor. I spent all my working life designing and building control systems for a wide range of machine tools and other automatic machinery and processes until I retired at the end of 2014.
With help from my wife, we built our own house on a smallholding where over the years we kept chickens, ducks, geese, turkeys, sheep, goats, pigs and cattle. Being a Control Engineer by profession I have installed a wind turbine, solar panels and a ground-source heat-pump heating system, with all three interconnected and managed by my own control system.
I was a member of the Independent Custody Visitor team in Peterborough for 9 years, a voluntary role in which we made frequent but unannounced visits to the Thorpe Wood and former Bridge Street police stations to check that people held in custody were being treated correctly. For over 26 years I was a volunteer reader for RNIB (Royal National Institute of Blind People) at their Peterborough headquarters until they closed in 2016, recording a wide variety of material for people with sight problems. I now record books at home for the Calibre Audio Library, to add to their library of over 12,000 audio books available free of charge to anyone who is unable to read a print book because of sight problems, dyslexia or other disabilities. In 2016 I also began volunteering with FOPP, using my audio recording experience to help with Storybook Dads in the prison.
I am line manager to our Volunteer Coordinator, take part in regular meetings between FOPP and the Prison Director, built much of the FOPP website and maintain it. In common with the other directors, I also take part in conducting some of the annual volunteer reviews.
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