Richard grew up in Suffolk where his family has farmed outside Ipswich for several generations. He has a long-standing interest in politics. Richard worked as an advisor to David Ruffley MP, then Shadow Minister for Police Reform, before setting up his own political consultancy business working for MPs and Think Tanks both regionally and nationally.
Richard was first elected to represent the Hardwick Division on Suffolk County Council in May 2017. Since being elected to the Council, his consultancy work has taken more of a back seat, but he continues to have other business interests across Suffolk. Richard runs a gym and supplement firm in Newmarket, has a share in a wedding venue just outside Ipswich, and still has a role in the family’s small farm in Belstead.
Since May 2018, Richard has served as the County Council’s Cabinet Member for Environment and Public Protection. This role encompasses a wide range of services including planning, trading standards, our bid to make Suffolk the Greenest County, and the fire service. He also serves on West Suffolk Council, and served on its predecessor authority the St Edmundsbury Borough Council, where he chaired the Sustainable Development Panel. Richard is a Bury St Edmunds Town Councillor and chaired the Town Council in 2009/10.
Richard's main priorities for his Division include successfully accommodating the planned growth of Bury St Edmunds, tackling the state of our highways, curbing illegal parking, enhancing our natural environment, and delivering more opportunities for members of our community to be physically active.
Richard can be contacted at Richard.Rout@suffolk.gov.uk