Mike Drew

Councillor for Yate North ward, Chair of Council

Mike Drew

Tel: 07966 228 864

Email: mike.drew@southglos.gov.uk

Facebook: Focus on Sodbury, Yate and Dodington

Mike founded the Focus Team in 1981 with his wife, when they moved here, just after they got married.  He has spent the last 40 years bringing people together to get things done for Yate. Starting from chairing a local playgroup he has been involved in all sorts of local groups, from playing cricket for a local team, volunteering as a trustee of charities to serving as a school governor on Brimsham Green School for 30 years. 

He has seen at first hand the struggle our schools have to cope with the terrible funding they get from government. Originally working at British Aerospace  he moved into working in education (computers). He’s passionate about education, training and increasing job opportunities locally. 

Residents have re-elected Mike at every election since 1983, giving him a wealth of experience of how to get things done for our area, and a long record of fighting for local schemes and winning. For example, he was the person who seized the opportunity to get our station reopened and has fought to get services improved ever since.

Like most members of the Focus Team he is a trained Dementia Friend. His own experience as a carer for a close relative informs his work to improve local health and social services support. As a former director of Merlin, (what is now part of Bromford) he is concerned about housing need, and wants to get more genuinely affordable housing for local families. 

Other parties recognise Mike’s expertise in Council finance – so for many years, until the current Conservative leadership on S Glos, the Council chose him to represent them on external financial bodies, irrespective of party labels. His skill is in being able to find ways to fund projects – raising money, making the money go further and ensuring we get the best possible value for money.  When everyone is strapped for cash that’s particularly important. 

Whatever needs doing, Mike is there providing practical help, from litter picking, to knocking on doors to listen to residents or hand delivering hundreds of  posters for charity events, he will be there.  

He volunteers  for local community groups in Yate, played a crucial role in the Project to save and raise millions to do up   Yate Outdoor Sports Complex,  and has served as both Mayor of Yate and Chair of South Gloucestershire. Mike is currently a Councillor for North Yate focussed on the new problems we are facing with funding cuts and new housing that lacks the schools and services to go with it.

His work campaigning for our community led him to be elected national  vice chair of the National Association of Local Councils. This  brings together all Town and Parish Councils campaigning for their local communities. In that role he gets the chance to lobby Ministers and senior civil servants about the issues we face. For example, he has won national backing for his campaign to solve the problems of ‘fleecehold’  all the residents on the new housing developments  in S Glos face. (The system where they have to pay maintenance charges for the open spaces and play areas, as well as paying council tax).  As well as campaigning for national change, Mike has helped groups of residents, for example helping the Autumn Brook residents take over their management company, so it is now run by residents for residents. 

You will see him most days in the Common with his dog.

 

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