Chung makes Bury history
FOR the past 20 years, Patrick Chung has been a friendly face behind the counter of his family-run Chinese restaurant.But now the 58-year-old, from Bury St Edmunds, is getting ready to swap a menu for a council agenda after being elected as a Conservative representative for the town's Minden ward.
FOR the past 20 years, Patrick Chung has been a friendly face behind the counter of his family-run Chinese restaurant.
But now the 58-year-old, from Bury St Edmunds, is getting ready to swap a menu for a council agenda after being elected as a Conservative representative for the town's Minden ward.
Mr Chung, who moved to Bury from Hong Kong 37 years' ago, is the first person of minority ethnic background to be voted on to Bury St Edmunds Town Council.
“It is a great honour, and I am looking forward to representing the community,” he said.
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“Becoming a councillor was something I had always wanted to do, but I had planned to wait for another two years when I had retired.
“But I was approached by the council and I just thought, why not?”
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Mr Chung, who lives on the town's Hardwick Estate with his wife, Anna, now faces the challenge of juggling his job at the Canton restaurant in Hatter Street, with council duties.
He said: “I work from 10am until 2pm, and from 5pm until 11pm every day except Tuesday, so it is going to be a struggle, but I have always had huge support from people in the town and I really wanted to give something back to the community. I am very keen on environmental issues, but other than that just intend to work on behalf of the people of Bury and on issues that are important.
“It is great that an ethnic minority has been recognised, and I feel that this is a real step in the right direction, and will hopefully pave the way for the election of more people like me in Suffolk.
“I am used to working as part of a team in the restaurant, and that is what I plan to do at the council as well, because I think that is really important.”