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Rupert Knowles - Spratton Ward

Rupert Knowles

Rupert Knowles is a retired horticulture and development professional living in Lower Harlestone. Originally from Colchester where he joined the Young Liberals in 1961.

His busy family fruit farm supplied supermarkets as well as local customers and employed many Eastern European and North African student fruit pickers, but Rupert was also active in countryside conservation and in farming politics. Later he sold the farm to become an adviser in integrated pest and disease management and in irrigation to make the best use of water. In 2001, he emigrated to China to teach at an agricultural university where he met his second wife, Lana Mo.

In 2006 they both worked for 5 years in agricultural development in Afghanistan on projects funded by UK, Canada, USA and EU. Rupert has also carried out consultancy work in Bulgaria, Zimbabwe, China, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Kazakhstan and Uzbekistan.

Rupert served as a school governor at Cranfield Academy. Rupert is retired but Lana works in Pitsford importing fresh-cut fruit for UK and European supermarkets from Ghana and other countries. They have a 10-year-old daughter who goes to school in Pitsford.

Rupert has a wide understanding of both international development and issues affecting rural communities in England. If elected, Rupert would be particularly active on issues affecting rural infrastructure, the environment and promoting understanding of the countryside.