Retiring president helped shape town

PUBLISHED: 13:51 04 May 2006 | UPDATED: 14:40 12 May 2010

John Reynolds with a first edition Buntingford Journal

John Reynolds with a first edition Buntingford Journal

THE president of the Buntingford Civic Society has stood down - after 35 years. John Reynolds, 76, of High Street, Buntingford, was one of the founding members of the original group, the Buntingford Conservation Area Action Committee. The group began with

THE president of the Buntingford Civic Society has stood down - after 35 years.

John Reynolds, 76, of High Street, Buntingford, was one of the founding members of the original group, the Buntingford Conservation Area Action Committee.

The group began with 11 members after concerns about a gap in the High Street.

He said: "There used to be a nice timber building where Somerfield now stands, but when it was knocked down there was a gap in the High Street for eight years. So we all decided something needed to be done about it."

John has been instrumental in the various society campaigns for improvements to the town over the years.

"In the early years we were concerned with parks, trees and planning considerations," he said.

"But the most important thing we have been part of is the improvements to the High Street, which took place 11 years ago. We were part of discussions that resulted in that change."

John was chairman of the society when he first joined, but became the president 12 years ago.

"I was president because my colleagues considered I did a lot for the society," he said.

"But over the last 12 years my position has been honoury."

As well as being a member of the civic society, John was a Buntingford town councillor for 34 years and a district councillor for 31 years.

He was also a magistrate for 28 years.

John and his father ran a building business from

Wyddial before opening a do-it-yourself shop at 10 High Street, Buntingford, in the

late 1960s.

Since retiring, John has dealt with antiques and has worked in planning consultation and has more recently renovated a house with his wife.

At the society's annual meeting on Thursday, chairman Derek Cooper said: "Buntingford would be a town far worse off without the qualities and contribution of John and the far-sightedness of him and his colleagues at that time in creating the civic society."

John was presented with a framed facsimile of the first edition of the Buntingford Journal, which was printed in 1976.

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