Exclusive Interview with Mark Hunter

June 28, 2005 12:48 PM
By Stephen Jolly in News Extra
The Hunter family: Lesley, Mark, Robert and Francesca

The Hunter family: Lesley, Mark, Robert and Francesca

As one of the best known names in the area, Mark Hunter has a reputation as an outspoken and effective campaigner. Straight talking and robust in his views, he never leaves you in any doubt where he stands.

So is he really as tough as he seems? News Extra’s Stephen Jolly set out to see what really makes Mark Hunter tick:

There are two things I really hate - unfairness and red tape! When I first got involved as a student apartheid was the big issue.

Nowadays I realise that there is also a great deal of injustice we can fight nearer to home as well.

I hate it when red tape gets in the way of common sense - and running a Council which has to negotiate all the time with Government departments has certainly given me plenty of experience of that!

As a local person, I get to experience the problems residents face at first hand. Half an hour sitting in a traffic jam tells you all you need to know about our local transport system!

When you have a family you find out first hand about the problems wrong-headed Government plans create.

Frankie, my 17 year old, hopes to be off to Glasgow university later this year, so I also know just how much the tuition fees the Government introduced cost and how difficult that will make it for many families on low incomes.

It's where my home is and it is an area with so much to offer - the countryside around us and the village atmosphere in so many of our local communities are its unique points, and the fact that there is still a real northern friendliness about it.

It's not surprising that it's in demand. I'm determined to do my bit to see we don't lose the character of the area.

For me the sense of achievement that comes from cutting through the red tape and getting things done for local people really gives me a buzz and keeps me going.

Whether its bringing jobs in the area, fighting to stop greedy developers trying to build on every last piece of open space - it all makes a difference.

Lesley and the children keep my feet on the ground though and taking time out to be with them is a great stress buster.

And of course as a lifelong fan, whenever Manchester City win I'm unstoppable!

What would you like to do next?