Oil man and former youth club leader in bid to join council

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The last vacancy on Market Rasen Town Council looks set to be snapped up by retired oil engineer James Patton.

The 66-year-old will put his case before council members tonight, who will then decide whether or not to co-opt him onto the council.

Members will also discuss whether to co-opt former schoolteacher Cathryn Turner, who made her presentation to council last month.

James says he heard there was a vacancy and since retiring a couple of years ago, he had some time on his hands.

“I used to be a youth club leader and I have had 35 years working overseas as a senior manager commissioning gas plants and oil refineries,” he said.

His work took him to Bahrain, Malaysia, Saudia Arabia, the UAE, India, Thailand, Iran, Iraq and Egypt. But James was born in Cleethorpes, has lived in Caistor for 30 years, before moving to Market Rasen eight years ago. He is also chairman of the Lincolnshire Oil Engine Club, which restores engines and takes them to shows and fetes.

“My interest isn’t political. I don’t have any political affiliations. I want to see things are nice. Things like litter bug me and holes in the road. If there’s anyway I can help I would like to do it,” he said.

James says his career has given him management experience, and in training, including training foreign staff. He believes he has a good grasp of health and safety issues, and as an engineer, “I know what looks right or wrong.”

“I was also youth club leader in one of the roughest places in Grimsby.”

If co-opted James and Cathryn would join John McNeill, who was recently elected unopposed.