Local Face: Graham Woodroffe

  |  Published: Feb 1st 1998

Graham Woodroffe has known and loved Wendover for 40 years as a result of visits to relatives in Thornton Crescent. On one such visit 16 years ago, Graham, wife Sue and daughters Clare and Alison saw a house they liked in an Estate Agent's window and have lived here ever since.

Graham was determined to quickly become involved in the community and so he was soon teaching at St Mary's Sunday School which led to a position on the Parochial Church Council and then as Diocesan Foundation Governor for Wendover Church of England Middle School (Clare was by then a pupil there). He has been undertaking these responsible tasks for 12 years and hopes that other young bloods of both sexes are coming along to help with this very rewarding work.

Sue, who was a Nursery Nurse, has worked during this time with children who have moderate learning difficulties at Pebble Brook School, initially at the Wendover House Annex and then in Aylesbury. Graham worked for many years at a senior level in the Post Office but today is a Director of a Hays Company which specialises in Home Delivery. He has always been involved in Sales and Marketing and he was elected a Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Marketing in 1996.

Many Wendover people in their teens (and now early twenties) know Graham well because one Governor duty he fulfilled with great relish for a number of years was accompanying the week long Year 7 (age 11 to 12) trip to Tenby in Pembrokeshire.

Graham has seen the introduction of Local Management of Schools, which dramatically changed the responsibilities of Governors, and other major changes such as the introduction of the National Curriculum. Recently, as Chairman of Governors, he has been deeply involved in an OFSTED inspection which is featured on the Spectrum page of this issue of Wend over News.

He feels that the children of Wendover are lucky to have a whole educational campus in the village (both of his children having passed through all the schools). His philosophy has always been that playing an active part in local life is essential to a young person's development. They should be given every opportunity to explore their potential and access to a wide range of experiences.

This strong belief led to Graham joining the Management Committee of Wendover Youth Centre two years ago as Chairman. The Centre is committed to offering a broad spectrum of experiences to a wide age range of local young people. An important part of this work gives our younger citizens the opportunity to contribute to the community, examples being the Eclipse Group giving to the Forget-me-Not Club; regular playschemes during the school holidays and by assisting at the Wheelchair Games at Stoke Mandeville each July. They also foster good international relations with Liffre and more recently the Israel Shalom Group. A party will be visiting Tel Aviv in the Spring.

When not busy with his other activities, Graham likes walking in the Chilterns, cycling (along the canals), watercolour painting and bowls, having been a member of Wendover and Chiltern Hills Bowls Club since he moved here.

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