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JP’s acknowledged for service to community

Ian Combridge of South Grafton receives his commemorative certificate from Chris Gulaptis MP.

Lynne Mowbray

Two Clarence Valley men have recently received commemorative certificates in recognition of their outstanding dedication to the community, from Member for Clarence Chris Gulaptis MP.

William (Bill) Baker of Townsend and Ian Combridge of South Grafton were recognised for their 50 years service to the community, as a Justice of the Peace.

Mr Baker 91 said that his father who fought in WW1 was also a Justice of the Peace (JP).

“When he was dying, he told me that he wanted me to continue to look after the people (community) by being a JP,” Mr Baker said.

“After my father died I was contacted by JJ Cahill, who was a Member of Parliament and he asked me if I wanted to continue on from my father; so he put me through as a JP.

“So since then, I’ve just continued with it because I just like helping people,” he said.

Mr Baker who is still a JP, has been married to wife Val for 64 years and now has seven grandchildren and nine great-grandchildren.

Ian Combridge 77 said that he became a JP in 1966 while working as a health inspector in the Southern Highlands.

“I was working in general duties at the council and they advised me that it may be a good idea to become a JP,” said Mr Combridge.

“Working in local government and NSW public health, you are a guide for people, on how to deal with issues.

“A lot of people out there are not sure what their rights are and I was able to assist them from my knowledge gained while working in local government. It’s all changed a lot now though.

“It’s been very satisfying and I feel blessed to have been able to help people,” he said.

 
William (Bill) Baker received his commemorative certificate from Chris Gulaptis MP, watched on by wife Val and granddaughter Maddie Anderson. Images: Contributed
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