Councillor Dr. Merilyn Canet
My enthusiasm for protecting our environment started many years ago when my parents bought a farm at Sundridge. My sister is the Farmer now. I went to school at Walthamstow Hall where I was a keen member of their Young Farmers' Club when not studying. My interests in science and health led me to study dentistry at Guys Hospital Dental School, London University. I spent my entire professional life as a dentist .
I returned to live in Sevenoaks with my two young daughters, buying a semi-derelict house near their school where, after it had been repaired, I started my own practice. We lived above it and also shared the house with a series of students. My elder daughter lives in London and the younger lives with her very sporty family in Otford.
I have been actively involved in politics since 1983 when I joined the Liberal Democratic Party , and was elected as a Town Councillor in 1987. Later in 19911 was elected as a District Councillor and reelected as a Town Councillor becoming Town Mayor 1992.1 was part of the Liberal Democrat+ Labour coalition that ran the District Council for 4 years.
I have been especially keen on allotment gardening and growing my own food as I did as a child. I have recently handed my plot back after 25 years, for new gardeners to occupy and enjoy.Now there are the pleasures of watching my grandchildren grow up, fortunately they live in Otford.l still play golf and walking football in our beautiful countryside. The house that I built for my retirement, has a garden which although tiny, grows food for me and friends to enjoy.
There is much good music making in Sevenoaks, I especially like the classical repertoire and some jazz.As a member of U3A since I retired, I learnt to sculpt and latterly paint. I attend science, discussion groups and computing too.
We face challenges both locally and nationally to our planet which must be met for the sake of our children and grandchildren. Our environment both natural and built must be cherished now.I will continue to campaign for this and to for a better narrative for older people including suitable housing , transport, social activities , working, and adequate health care.
I am glad to be able to put effort into our community and to try to make it good place to live , work and play.