I’m British, Male, Conservative, A Games Designer and Player, An Entrepreneur, A Christian, A Husband, A Father, A Martial Artist, A Bodybuilder an ex-County Councillor and a Town Councillor. Not necessarily in that order.
I’m Forty-Six. There’s no getting around it. At the minute the clocked ticked past midnight on September 29th 2008 I slid out of my third decade and quietly into my fourth. And you know what? I like it. It feels great to be over forty. I don’t know what all the fuss is about. In the immortal words of James Brown: “I feel good!”
I live on the Planet Earth, In the continent of Europe (not ruled by it), in the United Kindom, In England, In the County Of Cambridgeshire, In Wisbech: the Capital of the Fens. I hope that’s not too much detail. But if it is, let’s face it, I didn’t force you to read it…
My wife Marie Tierney is in teaching, an artist, a history buff, and a self-confessed geek. If anybody out there is currently thinking of marrying an attractive, intelligent, sassy woman can I just say (unless you are of a nervous disposition) that I highly recommend it!
My son, Joe, is eight years old. He’s a mass of energy and excitement. If you’ve got, or have ever had, a young child then you know what I mean! Being a Dad is just about the best thing I’ve ever done in my life. It’s also the most tiring!!!
My Mum (Brenda) and Stepfather (Tony) live in Leverington, Cambridgeshire. My Dad (John) and Stepmother (Shirley) live in Hemel Hempstead, Herts. I have two Brothers; Alan and Dan. Dan and his wife Gemma live in Manea, Cambridgeshire. Alan and his wife Candy live in Hertfordshire with their first child (my first Niece) Eva. She’s cool!
I’ve been involved in natural bodybuilding for 20 years. When training in Wisbech I like to use Shapers, 18 North St, Wisbech, PE13 1NP, Tel. 01945 589100. You can find out about gyms in the local area here.
Music & Drama
I’m a hobby guitarist and singer, enjoying karaoke, songwriting and jamming with other musicians (when the chance arises.) I mess about a bit on the keyboard too. I’m not particularly good at any of these, but I do enjoy having a go. I’m also a member of the Leverington Amateur Dramatic Society (L.A.D.S.) who put in plays and performances each year around and about the area.
I have a black sash and an instructors qualification in a style of Kung Fu called Fut Gar, which means ‘Monks Family’. I used to teach a decade ago, but these days I just practice for personal fitness and pleasure. I also have an honourary Brown Belt in Shotokan Karate and a Black Belt In Kickboxing.
I’m a gamer. There. I’ve said it. It’s out of the box. What is a gamer? it’s a person who enjoys playing many different types of games. Recently, young people who enjoy Video Games have tried to steal the term for themselves, but frankly, that’s not what a real gamer is. A real gamer likes many different types of games. Board games. Card games. Computer games. Roleplaying Games. Murder Mystery Games. You get the idea. If this sounds just plain stupid to you then forget I mentioned it. On the other hand, If you like the sound of it then you might want to check out the scene at Flagship Magazine or BoardGameGeek. Or even at Madhouse.
I am a town councillor representing the Wisbech Peckover ward. I’m also the branch chairman of Wisbech Conservatives, an Officer in the North-East Cambs Conservative Association Executive, and the Deputy Chairman (Membership) or Cambridgeshire and Bedfordshire Conservatives Area Committee. And I’m out of breath telling you that. :) I hope you didn’t nod off!
I’ve been blogging for several years now and am proud to have won several national awards. Blogging isn’t everyone’s cup of tea, but it’s a fun way to have a bit of a rant and to encourage people to debate the different issues that crop up.
Steve with Steve Barclay MP and Sir Graham Bright PCC.
While I was still a county councillor I was cabinet member for Health & Wellbeing and I was proud to be the first ever chairman of Cambridgeshire’s Health & Wellbeing Board. As the chairman of the Health & Wellbeing Board, I was both honoured and humbled to be nominally responsible for the health and wellbeing of the entire county – more than half a million people! Luckily – I was supported by an incredible team of officers and colleagues. It was an exciting time.
Locally, I am a founder member of the Newton Street Pride and Leverington Street Pride groups. I have also volunteered with Wisbech Street Pride. I’ve helped the Town Team with discos for the kids and always try to always pitch in to local events, rolling up my sleeves and getting to work.
I am proud to have worked with great local people to secure funds that changed the Gypsy Lane junction on the A1101 from the most dangerous black spot in the country to a place where there has not been a single major accident since. Also to have secured the funding for (and donated to) the brand new Leverington Play Area (in association with the wonderful Leverington Playground Group, Parish council and Sports & Social Club). I have fought against the blight of wind turbines with the Fenrats in Tydd St. Giles, have worked to help fundraise and support pre-school groups in Gorefield and Tydd St. Giles and supported Newton for their play area and highways improvements. In Wisbech i’ve worked across political boundaries with colleagues from all parties on the Keep It Local Campaign, Wisbech2020, Town Team, improvements to the market place and much more besides.
I am a founder member of Leverington Conservatives, Newton & Tydd Conservatives and Fens Conservative Future (an organisation which helps young people get involved and interested in politics, of the Conservative variety of course!)
I have been intrinsically involved with the county’s award-winning social media website ShapeYourPlace – which I helped steer through some difficult obstacles. ShapeYourPlace is now appearing right across the county and encouraging people to communicate, debate and discuss widely and comprehensively on many local issues.
Fenrats Win the First Battle Of Many
I was previously chairman of the Bowthorpe Association (a charity that helps and supports people suffering from mental illness) for several years and remain a trustee and member of the Newton Village Hall Committee and the Leverington Village Hall Committee.
Last Four Newsletters
I prefer logical and careful policy consideration to emotional rollercoasters and believe that good manners and civility are better than cynicism, nastiness and negativity – but I am perfectly capable of responding robustly when cheap political shots are taken at me by the opposition. Or by the press. Or by the press in support of the opposition. All of which are entirely common.
I hate bullies, in all their forms.
I am a Christian. I don’t talk about it very much because I believes people’s faith is their business and nobody else’s.
In my spare time I enjoy martial arts (I’m a qualified Kung Fu instructor, though I have not instructed for many years now), going to the gym, reading, writing, playing guitar (poorly) and singing (badly.) But you don’t have to listen to me do that, so don’t worry.
Some Policy Positions
I am broadly a supporter of small state, low tax solutions – but I value traditional institutions, British cultural norms and heritage as worthy of protection. I like the term: “Freedom – with a conscience” as a description of how these ideals fit together.
I believe in a social safety net, but I feel that it should be just that – a safety net. Not a career option and definitely not something to be given to people who earn ten times as much as the genuinely poor and disadvantaged. There would be so many more resources available for the genuinely in-need, the disabled, the young and the elderly if we could get back to that.
I have a deep and abiding faith in the power and morality of free markets to create greater prosperity and happiness for all. I note that corporatism and crony capitalism are not free markets – and I suggest that a fair number of our economic problems actually arise from state interference in markets. Because of this, I am a Free Market Social Justice campaigner. I recommend this and this as great primers for free market economics if anybody is interested.
I think adults should generally be allowed to get on with their lives without state interference if they are choosing to do things which harm nobody else and infringe nobody’s own liberties.
I think people who make stuff, grow stuff, invent stuff, add value to stuff, sell stuff and find amazing new ways to use stuff are heroes and should be recognised as such.
I have no problem with huge companies and think they bring great benefits to us all – but I also think that trade protectionism and corporatism have led to an imbalance and bias against smaller firms. I support reasonable methods to redress the imbalance where they arise – particularly via taxation and deregulation.
I am very sceptical about Anthropogenic Global Warming and I’m not afraid to say so. I try to keep an open mind, but worry that politics and science have mixed in a way that is not healthy on the issue. I would like to see a bit more balance in the discussion. I recommend this website for those who’d like to think outside the box. I don’t earn royalties for any of these suggestions. : )
I would vote for the UK to leave the EU tomorrow – were it an option. Better Off Out.
This Is Now
In June 2009 I won my first election and earned the right to stand as County Councillor on behalf of the people of the Roman Bank & Peckover Division of North-East Cambridgeshire as their Conservative councillor. I won with 53% of the vote. Four years later the people of Roman Bank & Peckover voted to replace me with UKIP – I lost by eleven votes. Que Sera Sera, I wish the new councillor and the people of the area well. If I have to hate foreign people in order to get elected, I’d rather not be elected. It has, nevertheless, been a privilege and an honour to have served. Thank you.
“If you’re not a liberal at 20, you have no heart, and if you’re not a conservative at 40, you have no head.” – Winston Churchill