Peter Kenyon

BPRCVS Trustee Peter Kenyon

BPRCVS Trustee appointed by Mid Pennine Arts

I became a trustee on 11th October 2016 at the AGM, having attended the September board meeting as an observer.

I had been having meetings with Christine, and Terry before that as chair of Burnley Community Network which led to a position on the Executive of Burnley Action Partnership as representative of the community sector. This had become increasingly fictional as the organisations who were part of BCN fell away once it ceased to be a grant giving organisation.

I am an ordinary member of the board of trustees so far with no special responsibility regarding the CVS.

I intend to carry on the Burnley Action partnership executive to do my best to represent the interests of the voluntary sector alongside Christine.

I was until 2006 a councillor on the Executive of Burnley Borough Council responsible for Finance and Personnel issues. I had been a member of the council continuously since 1982. I am also a board member of several other local organisations: Burnley & Pendle Citizen’s Advice Bureau, Smile (Specialist Mediation in Lancashire East), Mid Pennine Arts Association, and Burnley Youth Theatre. I am secretary of the local Labour Party.

I was from 1967 until 1999 a community dental officer (more commonly known as a school dentist) working first for the county council but transferred to the NHS in 1974. In that capacity I served as a staff side representative for several years.

I graduated with a BDS degree from Edinburgh University in 1967. I have not sought to win awards from my voluntary work.

I have been an active member of the Labour Party in Burnley since 1970, and involved with the Mid Pennine Arts Association since I came to Burnley in 1967. I was first elected to the council in 1972 and served two years until the county borough council ceased to exist. After a period as a single parent in the late 1970’s I was re-elected to the council in1982, and through that became involved as a trustee  with the CAB and Burnley Youth Theatre. My involvement with Smile followed my loss of a seat on the council in 2006, because I wanted to do what I could to promote community cohesion in Burnley. It is through these organisations that I have learned to appreciate the great contribution that the voluntary sector makes to society at large. The sector is the main creator of ‘social capital’, and is grossly undervalued because its activity contributes much more than simply gross domestic product.

Being a trustee is challenging. You are effectively in the position of having the same responsibilities as a company director, where you have to satisfy yourself that the organisation is being governed properly and that its finances are soundly managed. This can sometimes lead to conflict with permanent staff who can interpret questioning to be lack of support.

When not being a board or party member I have enjoyed walking the hills, in this country and trekking in Europe. I have completed 10 unsupported coast to coast crossings of the Highlands of Scotland from west to east, though sadly now my legs are not up to the effort. I still sing in a choir on a regular weekly basis, something I have been doing on and off since I was a church choirboy. My singing now is wholly secular!