Two Oxford City councillors to step down after a combined 30-year service

Jim Campbell

Jim Campbell

First published in News The Oxford Times: Photograph of the Author by , Education Reporter, also covering West Oxford. Call me on (01865) 425437

TWO city councillors, Jim Campbell and Shah Khan, are stepping down from their roles after a combined duty of nearly 30 years.

Jim Campbell stood for election in 1995 for Oxford City Council but in six weeks, after 19 years representing the Liberal Democrats in St Margaret’s ward, he will step down.

Grandfather Mr Campbell, a former teacher, said: “I am going to be 75, which I think is fairly elderly.

“I want to stop being a councillor while I am still getting a lot of pleasure from it.”

Mr Campbell, of Frenchay Road, North Oxford, said he will continue to keep an eye on local issues, including the future of the Covered Market, and will campaign in favour of staying in Europe ahead of the planned referendum.

He said: “I don’t do quiet.”

But there are some parts of being a city councillor Mr Campbell will not miss.

He said: “I don’t suppose I will miss the late night meetings and some of the rather petty party political arguments in those meetings.”

Mr Campbell has long been a supporter of the Covered Market and said: “There is good will on both sides and really good people on both sides, but there are one or two who are not so good.

“There has been a real effort over the last year by the council and traders to try and repair the relationship between them, which has been pretty poor.

“That showed itself in the agreement to appoint a manager which I think is very important. But then there was this totally disastrous arbitration which has put us right back as far as I am concerned.”

Speaking about his time as a councillor he said he had just one regret – the closure of the skate park at Aristotle Lane Recreation Ground.

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In 2002, the £37,000 skate park was closed after complaints about the noise.

He said: “We took some bad advice about that. We wanted somewhere for kids between the ages of 10 and 16 to go but what we decided was wrong.

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  • Shah Khan

“I was the portfolio holder for leisure and I carried the blame for that one.

“I think I have got over that but it will always be something I remember – it taught me you should not always take the advice you are given.”

Liz Wade will stand for the Liberal Democrats in the May elections.

Oxford city councillor Shah Khan, 59, is also stepping down after eight years in the role. Mr Khan of Havelock Road, Cowley, will not seek re-election in the city council elections on Thursday, May 22.

He said he was making the decision for personal reasons and to spend more time with his family.

Mr Khan represents Labour for the Cowley ward, alongside Helen O’Hara.

He said: “I will obviously continue to carry out my duty as a councillor until May 22.

“I have very much enjoyed my time being a councillor, I really have loved it.

“I want to thank all the people who have voted for me and supported me all the way through and I have always tried to do as much as I could for the people in my ward.

“We have got a great leader in Bob Price and all the council officers.”

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