We moved from living above my Woodford Green shop to Wellington Hill, High Beach in Epping Forest in 1990.

My new next door neighbors were the most lovely people Ron and Norma Green. Ron was a campaign manager, for John Major amongst others, and Norma was involved in Essex County Council and at Waltham Abbey.

I came from a Conservative background and had an interest in politics, enjoying long chats with Ron and Norma, they asked me if I would be interested in running for Town Councillor – as they both liked my views on local issues.

I ran for a Labour stronghold of Paternoster Ward with little hope of winning. I campaigned hard with the help of family and friends, and on election day it looked like I was getting a lot of interest.

Just after midnight after the second recount it was announced that I had lost by just a few votes.

To finish first, first you must finish