After nearly six decades in politics a former Derbyshire County Council chairman is looking to spend time reading books and playing golf rather than being in the public eye.
Robin Baldry, 73, thinks politics is a young person’s game and so has made the decision to step away from local government and charity work.
He said: “I would never want to change anything about my career. It has been tremendous, hard work, and long hours but I have loved being involved with the community.”
The great-grandfather first came to politics when he was 15 and playing for Ipswich Town FC, he supported the Conservatives and in 1982 became an agent for the party drumming up voters for elections.
He moved to Buxton at the turn of the millennium and has since gone on to become a councillor, mayor and also became chairman of the cabinet.
During his time in politics he has raised more than £500,000 for local and national charities with various music and social events.
“To me it is important to give something back to the community and all I did was organise the events, everyone who was there helped to raise the money,” he said.
Robin gave his last speech at the meeting of the Independent party on Tuesday this week. He said after assisting with the general election in May he couldn’t keep up with the younger generation and felt if he could not give 100 per cent he shouldn’t be doing it any more.
“I will miss so much about politics, from the great camaraderie to the great debates, but now is the time for me to hang up my hat.
“For other councillors to succeed they need to take the politics out of the job,” he said, “It is not about being Labour or Conservative when you are dealing with a small area, it is about what is best for the community. I believe people are getting too fixated on party allegiances rather than making looking at the bigger picture.”
Since taking more of a back seat he said for the first time in life he is able to read books for fun and will be playing more golf, a hobby he has had since he was 12.
During his life Robin has met the Queen, and he said shaking hands with her was the proudest moment of his career.
He has also been to Washington and stood in the same place as the President when he speaks to the senate.
In December 2012, Robin was given a suspended sentence for fraudulent expense claims but it was not just his political life that has been fraught with low points.
Robin has had to deal with the death of one of his daughters, followed by his 18-year-old granddaughter and then his four-month-old grandson died from cot-death. He also lost his brother, Bert, who lived in Scotland and was the person Robin looked up to.
He said: “My wife has gone through so much with me, sometimes I was leaving the house at 6am and not returning until midnight so now we can spend some time together.
“Despite the downfalls you just have to get on with life and make the most of it,” he said.
Robin and his wife Linda, 63, who is a church warden at St John’s Church, Buxton, are celebrating 25 years of marriage next year and will be jetting off to the Caribbean to mark the occasion.