Janice joins council

HELPING the community is why Tipton’s Janice Aherne wanted to join Ottery Town Council.

The 57-year-old, pictured, has taken an active interest in village life since moving there from the South East 20 years ago, helping organise the local horse show and run the youth club. On Monday, she attended her first council planning committee meeting as Tipton St John ward member.

“It’s about helping the local community and giving back to the place that we live in,” said Janice. “Tipton is such a lovely place to live, and I want to help keep it that way.”

She wants local residents to tell her exactly how she can help, and is thinking of placing a comment box in the post office, though which people can raise issues and concerns.

Janice, Sidmouth Donkey Sanctuary’s education and activities manager, lives with HGV driver husband Maurice, daughter Keira, 17, and foster daughter Holly Thomas, eight.

Having seen her other three children, Samantha, Philip and Kym through the King’s School, and with Keira at Sidmouth College, she has a special interest in young people’s issues. “Having experienced through my children the problem that there is little for teenagers to do around here, I’m aware that we need to provide them with activities as much as possible, or facilities at least,” she said.

Her mother has just moved into the village, so she is also keen to represent the older generation. Gaining a place on the council was a pleasant surprise.

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“It’s going to be a learning curve, but I’m up for it,” she said. “And having attended the planning meeting, I like the idea of being another female face on a predominantly male committee.”