Hi, Please remember you are voting more for the Common Sense Idea than for me... but here are some edited highlights!


Lancashire, working class background. Local grammar school then Oxford University, St John’s College. Studied history (still reading history)

First career

Management with M&S. 1971 -2000. Mainly running stores plus work in personnel, training and marketing. Community involvement with Inner London schools. (Message – “Don’t blame the workers!” Ultimately all failures are down to management.) 

Second career

Teaching 2000-2014. English as a Foreign Language. Mainly in Paris. Unique insight into French society; students, workers, executives, civil servants, French Elite in Ministry of Finance. Plus London. Teaching students from across the world. (Message – Inspiring teaching demands enormous effort. Fun but hard work! Far more intense than management)

Living abroad

Extensive experience of living in Paris. French speaker. (Message – Living in another culture/society opens your eyes on your own country)

Keeping me off the streets

Reading, Mountains around the world (but nowhere beats the Lake District!) Landscape Photography (learning) Football (Preston NE) Cricket, most other sports. Great respect for the top performers. Sensible jogger myself. Music - Yet to recover from death of Whitney Houston. Jacques Brel. Usual silver haired rocker. Jive dancing (lapsed – should restart), French wine (best in the world) St Estephe.

Graham Cartmell, April 2015.