John was born in Hayes, Middlesex and lived in that general area until going off to secondary boarding school in High Wycombe at the age of 11. He left school at 15 “running away” to join the Merchant Navy, and to a well known American oil company, remaining at sea for 10 years rising up the ranks. In 1985 he moved to work ashore for the same company in London firstly in the personnel department supervising about 1500 seafarers of various nationalities before moving into the 2-man IT department and later on solely managing all shipboard communications, IT and navigation systems. He took early retirement in 2013 after the company sold the last of its tankers. During his career he developed many computer applications for the company and later on, post retirement, using that knowledge in developing systems for businesses and for the town such as that currently used to analyse vehicle speed data.
He moved to Haverhill in 1988 “by accident” having seen a house for sale when helping a friend move house just a few doors away and seeing the opportunities such a move could bring especially as a newborn son had just come along. A move he has never regretted. The daily commute to London however became ever more exasperating and luckily working from home became an opportunity in 2000 when his company merged with another and moved to Surrey. Since retirement he has taken a great deal of interest in the town and, even well before being elected as a Councillor in 2015, he was regularly seen at Town and Borough Council events understanding the problems that the town has.
John is passionate about the town and takes a great deal of interest in it responding to resident/business queries and problems wherever possible. He has campaigned hard for the return of a sustainable rail link to Cambridge area and will question anything that is seen as unjust to the people of Haverhill especially over large housing developments. He is the major force behind the development of this Town Council website.
Councillor John Burns has been elected by his fellow Councillors to be the Town’s Mayor for the 2020/2021 administration period.
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