Hello, I'm Peter Topping and here's a bit more about me ...


My family have lived in or near Cambridge since we came back from Hong Kong in the 1980s. I have worked in the private sector, but mainly in public service; advising Home Office ministers on criminal law policy in the 1990s, then as Regional Director for Legal Aid for the East of England between 1996-2002, and then running and reviewing major government programmes across Whitehall up until 2016. 

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I joined my parish council in Whittlesford in 2006 and decided to stand as district councillor in 2008 when the area was fighting off a major land grab for 12,000 house at Hanley Grange. I was successful and was re-elected in 2012 and for a third time in 2016. In 2013 I was elected as the County Councillor for the ten villages round Duxford.  In May 2016 I was elected to be the leader for South Cambridgeshire District Council.

This year I was re-elected to the County Council, with 55% of the votes cast, to cover the villages of Pampisford, Hinxton, Duxford, Ickleton, Whittlesford, Thriplow, Foxton, Fowlmere, Shepreth, Great and Little Chishill and Heydon. It is a huge geographic area, incorporating two rail lines and two major roads, the A505 and  the A10. 

As well as being leader for South Cambridgeshire I chair the Heath and Wellbeing Board for Cambridgeshire, and am the housing portfolio holder on the new Combined Authority for Cambridgeshire and Peterborough.

In the past I've been a school governor (twice), a hospital governor, advised national charities Victim Support and the Citizenship Foundation on their communications, and served on the board of Centre 33, a Cambridge charity helping young people. 

My wife works in the NHS, and my two boys, who were born in Huntingdon and went to school in and around Cambridge, are now grown up and live and work away. I left the Senior Civil Service late in 2016 and I now have the opportunity to get really involved in getting things done locally, bringing to bear my experience of Whitehall and how central government works.  

Further back, I was born in the Yemen, where my father worked for BP as an engineer.  I went to school out  there and then in very cold and rainy Lancashire. I was a scholar at Oxford, where I studied English, and I have a Masters in Criminology from Cambridge. My first two jobs were as an inspector in the Royal Hong Kong Police and a crime reporter for the South China Morning Post. 


My main sport is rowing, returned to after a gap of some 25 years (!) and I also run and cycle. If you follow me on twitter you can also see pictures of my baking exploits and other culinary activities!