Paul Harrison is a very busy man. This is not surprising since he devotes three evenings out of five to his District Councillor duties and also holds down a full time job, often putting in 10 or 11 hours days to make up for the times when he leaves promptly to attend a council meeting. His job is that of a computer programmer/developer for SAS in Marlow. Fortunately for him, he isn’t required to travel for work much these days apart from the odd trip to North Carolina in the US.
He is the son of a journalist and newspaper editor with strong Labour leanings, shared by his mother, and, when he was a child, it was not uncommon to find a leading light of the Labour Party such as Brian Walden at the Sunday lunch table. Politics is in Paul’s blood so it was a natural progression that his first job was for Warwickshire County Council. His career in IT kept apace with his political interests and he has worked for various large companies, notably Whitbread in Luton.
Paul’s own leanings were towards the Tory Reform Group – the left of centre of Tory politics. He was no fan of Margaret Thatcher and joined the Conservative party only when Michael Heseltine, by then Paul’s local MP, opposed her.
Living in Sonning Common, he joined the Chiltern Society and became very exercised about the footpaths. By chance he gave vent to his feelings to Carol Viney who abruptly told him to ‘Stop whingeing and get involved’. Good advice indeed. He subsequently joined the Sonning Common Parish Council and the Sonning Common and Peppard Conservative Group. He took on the role of District Councillor for Sonning Common when Henry Kemp died. He remains a very active member of the local Conservative Association.
He works on two committees: the Scrutiny committee, examining the need for and planning social housing and the Audit and Governance committee that examines council spending.
In the little free time that Paul has, his passion is flying – not the aerobatics that so irritate some of us, but air touring that takes him as far afield as the northern French coastal towns and the isles of Scotland. He tries to keep fit with running and in summer, cycles cross-country to work.
He doesn’t take holidays as such, but uses his annual leave to go flying, to spend long weekends with his friend Claire and a ready-made family in Leamington Spa and the odd day to catch up on some gardening!