Freda still going strong ahead of 50th year

Freda Roberts MBE
Freda Roberts MBE

The Great Train Robbery, the formation of Milton Keynes, the second Paralympic Games at Stoke Mandeville – all have happened in the last 50 years and one councillor has been there throughout.

Liberal Democrat Freda Roberts was given a standing ovation and a bouquet of flowers by Aylesbury Vale District Council ahead of her 50th year as a councillor.

Mrs Roberts said: “I was surprised that they did it. I had an inkling someone was going to do something. It was very nice.

“It’s nice when some of the opposition congratulate you. For instance, one of the youngest councillors, Pearl Lewis (Conservative), put on the card ‘congratulations, go girl’.

“That’s good because I don’t think she’s ever spoken to me before.”

The Southcourt councillor added that for as long her brain was still active she would always have something to say.

“I think I must still enjoy doing it otherwise I wouldn’t be in this position.

“I think I have had a very interesting life. I like being involved with people.

“I always thought I was able to help those less fortunate. That’s still appropriate today where somebody has got a problem.”

Mrs Roberts has twice been mayor in her 50 years and represented Bucks County Council too. Such has been her dedication the councillor said she has had to prioritise.

“Over the years my family has suffered, they have always thought the council came 
before they did. I begin to realise what they say is probably true.”

Despite still relishing her role in the community Mrs Roberts said life on the council had changed dramatically since the 1960s.

She added: “The way the council operates these days is not like the one I joined all those years ago – we don’t have committees and it’s all done by a few people.

“It’s them and us. You can see the people who are important, they’re the ones who sit at the front.”