A Lewisham resident since 1988, Susan has been one of its councillors since 1998. As a Cabinet Member between 2002 and 2014, she leads on customer services, environment, public services and strategic housing, all issues about which she is very passionate. She introduced new recycling methods, increasing the collection of different materials, and promoted the Love Lewisham app, the enviro-crime reporting tool, since adopted by many organisations and by the Mayor of London for the 2012 London Olympics. For this work, she was awarded “Highly Recommended” in the Partnership category at the 2013 LGIU Councillor Achievement Awards. From 2002 until 2014, Susan chaired the South East London Housing Partnership; working closely with housing associations, the GLA, MPs and ministers to address London’s housing issues and needs. Working on climate change, and through attracting external funding, she has helped reduce fuel poverty for residents and carbon emissions from their homes and from public and private buildings.
Whilst also having responsibility for Lewisham’s green spaces and parks during this period, Susan worked in partnership with communities to improve their parks creating sustainable facilities; projects which have helped increase year on year her borough’s Green Flag awards. Close work with DEFRA, thanks to EU funding, has transformed one of the larger parks in Lewisham with much-needed flood alleviation for central Lewisham. Susan’s long involvement with Groundwork, and its reorganisations, began in 2002 as a nominee to the Thames Gateway South board, and she has remained active ever since, promoting the organisation’s benefits and skills at every appropriate opportunity. She is proud of Groundwork’s involvement in London via practical local action, and having worked for the NHS for most of her working life, Susan appreciates the mental and physical health benefits that access to green spaces and green jobs brings to individuals and communities.
Susan is a member of Lewisham Homes Board and is involved in council homes new build, and resident-led environmental improvements on housing estates. She is very proud to be Chair of the Friends of Horniman Museum and Gardens.