Councillor John Smith OBE
November 5th 2009
Worcestershire County, Wychavon District and Evesham Town Councillor John Smith was invested into ‘The Most Excellent Order of the British Empire’ (OBE) as an officer
We at Wychavon, are all very proud of John and his achievements over many years working in local government for the betterment of residents, visitors and the environment. This is a very well deserved award and our congratulations go to him and his wife Frances who has been at his side, helping and supporting over many years.
A little bit of history about John Hyde Smith OBE
John was born in Evesham on 17th September 1942
He was educated at Hampton Parochial Church School and Evesham High School (then called Evesham County Secondary School) and North Gloucestershire Technical College, Cheltenham
He was a Boy Scout and a member of Evesham Sea Cadet Corp, where he played the drums and was a member of the guard (one of the only Sea Cadet Units at that time to have an armed guard undertaking rifle drill on the march at parades. John is now President of the Sea Cadet Unit.
John Undertook an Electrical apprenticeship at Booth & Bomford and then Wathes (Western), completed at the Midlands Electricity Board in 1962
Now retired from Midlands Electricity Board (Repairs & Distribution Manager for the privatised section (Power House), took early retirement in June 1996. He devotes most of his time to community work.
He was a Founder-member of the Evesham & Pershore Housing Association during its formative years and very much involved in the original transfer of Housing stock from Wychavon District Council. Now a Board Member on Rooftop Housing.
John’s political career started in 1983 when he was persuaded with much arm twisting, cajoling and the consumption of half-a-bottle of whiskey by the late Martin Davey (former County Councillor).
He represents the Great Hampton Ward on Evesham Town Council & Wychavon District Council and Evesham North West Division on Worcestershire County Council.
John was first elected to Wychavon District Council in 1983. He was appointed Chairman of the Housing Design & Property Sub-Committee in October 1984; Chairman of Housing Committee 1986; Leader of the Council April 1989 – 1992;Chairman of the Community Partnership Committee in 1999; Vice-Chairman of the District Council May 2001; Chairman of the District Council May 2002. John was re-elected to the District Council at the elections on 3rd May 2007.
In May 1987, John was elected to Evesham Town Council, was chairman of the Property Committee until 2008; was elected Mayor of Evesham for the municipal year 1992/93. Consort to his wife, Frances, for her Mayoral year 2005/6. John was re-elected unopposed to the Town Council at elections on 3 May 2007
In December 1995, John was elected to Hereford & Worcester County Council at a by-election (following the death of the former councillor Martin Davey). He was re-elected to Worcestershire County Council in May 1996 (following the splitting of the two counties). He was a portfolio holder for Environment from June 2001 to December 2001 (prior to re-organisation to cabinet-style in January 2002); advisor to Cabinet Member for Economic Development & Regeneration, Environment and Sustainability (2002-4) Formerly Cabinet; member for Environment & Transport before becoming; Vice-Chairman in 2006; Chairman 2007/8; Currently Cabinet Member with Responsibility for Health Improvement a new post from May 2008 to address health issues generally in Worcestershire and will sit on the PCT Board as a non-executive member
Member of the Regional Flood Defence Committee (Midlands Region)
John is married to Frances and they have 2 daughters, Joanne & Claire and 2 grandchildren Jack & Emma.
He is a Trustee of John Martin Charity (one of the largest charities in the country) distributing approx. £500,000 annually under Relief in Need, promotion of Education and propagation of the Christian Gospel through the 3 Evesham churches. His appointment commenced April 1977.
Trustee of Wallace House Management Committee dealing with the youth of the Town since 1988.
Trustee of Hampton Education Charity, assisting children from the area in Further Education (since May 1994)
Member of Evesham Arts Centre Management Committee since 2000.
Chairman of Evesham Twinning Association, promoting links with twin-towns of Dreux (France), Melsungen (Germany) and Evesham, New Jersey USA. (Member since 1990)
Member of The Friends of Evesham Community Hospital,supporting fund-raising initiatives to provide additional equipment for the local hospital.
LEA Governor of Evesham High School for 10 years+
Trustee of the Rudge Charity since approx. 1998.
Trustee of Deacle & Prince Henry’s Educational Foundation since 1997.
Member of Evesham Rotary Club.
Member of the Royal British Legion (undertaken selling of poppies for approx. 15 years)
Member of his local church – St. Andrew’s at Hampton where he is also a member and team captain of the local bell-ringers.
John considers it a great honour to have been civic leader of the three tiers of local government – Evesham Town Council (mayor); Wychavon District Council (chairman and leader) and Worcestershire County Council (chairman and formerly cabinet member responsible for Transport and the Environment). At present John is cabinet member for health.
In his spare time John enjoys gardening and DIY
Spare time, what spare time!