Proud father of four and newly-elected Camden Mayor, Peter Sidgreaves, would like to see workers spending less time travelling to work, and more time with family.
As a full-time IT Manager at Sydney Catholic Schools, Cr Sidgreaves travels two hours and 40 minutes every day. This means less time to spend with his wife Amy and their four daughters, Lani, aged eight, Kaiyah, six, and two-and-a-half year-old twins, Brielle and Zara.
“When I do get some spare time I like to spend it with my family,” the Liberal Camden councillor said.
Raising his girls so they know they are surrounded by “family who love them,” is the aim, he said.
Cr Sidgreaves was elected Mayor during the annual election on 11 September and will serve from 2018 to 2020.
He plans to step away from his position at Sydney Catholic Schools during Term 4 in order to concentrate on his Mayoral duties and hopefully have more family time.
As IT Manager at Sydney Catholic Schools he services 114 primary schools. He began his career in Catholic education many years ago as a teacher.
In deciding to run for council in 2012, Cr Sidgreaves was motivated by his love for the Camden area and his desire to see its many benefits protected for future generations.
“I love Camden’s open space and semi-rural lifestyle,” he said. “It is a fantastic place to bring up my kids.”
He says there is much he hopes to achieve during his time as Mayor, and reducing travel time for workers is a high priority. As someone who commutes almost three hours a day, Cr Sidgreaves is aware of the difficulties many people face in simply earning a living day-to-day.
“Sixty-five per cent of the population travel outside of Camden for work and I am one of those people… People want to work closer to home,” he said.
“As the population continues to grow, traffic will only get worse.
“My big focus will be creating local and diverse jobs in the area.
“I want to build on the work of the Camden Regional Economic Taskforce, which aims to bring investment and business into Camden.”
During his time as a councillor, Cr Sidgreaves has instigated new sporting and recreational facilities in Camden, as well as improvements to Argyle Street and the Oxley Street car park.
“I would like to see projects such as the water play parks and synthetic soccer fields delivered on time and to the best standard we can,” he said.
“The council also needs to continue to have a strong financial focus because the surplus funds allow us to deliver more community projects.”
Cr Sidgreaves is confident stepping into his new role despite the many challenges it will bring.
“From what I can see it will be intense but I am ready for the role.”