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Friday, June 17, 2016

Mayor of Bournemouth

Councillor Coope was born in Burton near Christchurch where the family lived
 for 60 years, and has two sisters who live in Dorset.  He attended St Joseph’s RC Primary School in Christchurch, then St Peter’s RC School in Bournemouth before studying at Brockenhurst’s Sixth Form College.  Councillor Coope’s gardening background came from having worked at MacPenny’s Nursery in Bransgore and at Burton Farm and on building sites in Christchurch and New Milton during school holidays.

In 1974, Eddie joined the British Army and trained at the Royal Artillery Depot in Woolwich, London before being attached to the 94 Locating Regiment, Royal Artillery, based in Celle, Germany.  He was present for

Her Majesty The Queen’s Silver Jubilee visit in 1977 when she inspected the Troops in Germany.  He also undertook Tours in Northern Ireland.  During his time with the British Army, Councillor Coope trained as a Regimental Surveyor and qualified as a Regimental Signaler and also as an HGV 3 Driver.  The main function of the 94 Locating Regiment was the deployment of Drones for surveillance purposes.

Councillor Coope left the British Army in 1981 and studied at Southampton’s Technical College to convert Army Surveying into Civilian Surveying.  From 1982 to 1987, he worked both off-shore and on land as a Hydrographic/Land Surveyor in the North Sea, Gulf of Mexico and the Red Sea carrying out rig positioning and pipeline surveys.  He was involved in a hydrographic survey of the Outer Hebrides (North Minches), and land surveyed through the Sinai Desert in Egypt and also coastal areas off British Waters.

In 1984, Eddie married Janet and a few years afterwards they had a son, Matthew followed by a daughter, Hannah.

Eddie set up his own landscaping, garden maintenance and garden design business in 1987 which he still actively runs.  He was elected onto Christchurch Borough Council in 1987 and served until 1995, serving on numerous Committees including the Sub-Committee for Highcliffe Castle.  In 1994 he was elected as Mayor of the Ancient Borough of Christchurch for 1994-1995, and was the second youngest Mayor in Christchurch’s history.  Eddie is the first Bournemouth Councillor to have been Mayor in two adjacent Boroughs!

Councillor Coope also held the positions of Chair and Vice-Chair for the Burton Youth Centre for 20 years, the Chair of the Christchurch Sea Cadets Unit for 10 years, and Chair of HENRA for six years.  He was also Chair of the Bournemouth Royal Artillery Branch Association until it was disbanded, and is still today on the Board of the Hengistbury Head Outdoor Education Centre.

In 2007, Eddie was elected onto Bournemouth Borough Council and currently represents the East Southbourne and Tuckton  Ward and since then has served on its Planning Committee, the Environment and Transport Committee, was both Chair and Vice-Chair of the Children & Education Committee and Vice-Chair of the Health & Adult Social Care Committee.  He is also the Bournemouth Borough Council representative on the Christchurch Harbour Steering Committee.

Councillor Coope enjoys most sports – particularly tennis, sailing, swimming, cycling and running – and enjoys reading and spending time with his family.

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