Old Princethorpian Interview

Tim Douglas

Bit of background, where you live, what you do for a living:

I live in Rugby but have been lucky enough to live and work all over. I’m a Senior Policy and Campaigns Officer for Propertymark, and lead on all their campaigns. Propertymark is a professional body so I work with its members to help them understand key legislative changes and I also lobby across local authorities, Westminster and the devolved parliaments and assemblies to help shape the rules for property agents, landlords and tenants.

Age: 33

When were you at Princethorpe - years from and to? 1997 - 2004

What was the school like in your day?

I’ve recently come back to the school to help with the Capital Campaign for the new Science Building, and it’s great to see recent improvements. When I started, we had boarders and when I left the AstroTurf had just been built. The Sixth Form back then had just two small rooms on the first floor and the tuck shop used to sell a lot of chocolate bars – mainly Chomps! It was, and still is, a great school.

How did Princethorpe affect the person you are today?

I still love rugby and sport, having only recently stopped playing semi-professional rugby. Ending up working in policy and politics will probably come as no surprise to my old teachers, as I always enjoyed expressing my views, a good debate and public speaking.

What advice would you give to your teenage self?

Probably to wear less hair gel.

Who or what has been the greatest influence on your life?

My parents and my older brother are a big influence and always on hand to give me advice and support what I am doing. My old rugby coach, Mike Umaga also helped me a lot and radical thinker Guy Verhofstadt has motivated me politically.  

What keeps you awake at night?

Staying up to watch Newsnight.

What has been your proudest moment/greatest achievement so far?

I’ve worked in Westminster for an MP, won National Two with Nuneaton RFC and completed a Masters distance learning whilst working full time, but my proudest achievement was being elected as a local Councillor in 2016 for the ward where I grew up. 

What’s your biggest indulgence?

White chocolate buttons.

If you had to have one last meal, what would it be?

My mum makes a cracking Shepherd’s Pie.

If you could be anywhere right now, where would it be and who would be with you?

Sitting in Lyon with my girlfriend Laura and a glass of red. We recently visited and it’s a lovely city.

Lasting memories of Princethorpe:

I was lucky to have so many great friends and amazing opportunities – playing rugby for the county and Midlands, the Christmas production and I played violin in the school orchestra. It’s also great to see that the House polo shirts that I and the other prefects introduced are still being worn. Getting to do the double of Head Boy and Captain of the First XV was very busy, but what a great experience.

Are you in touch with any other Old Princethorpians, if so whom?

I’m still very good friends with Michael Thomas, Chris Lee and I attended David Moroney’s wedding last year.

Is there anyone you would like to track down?

It would be great to know what some of the old teachers are up to and that the rugby team is still winning and beating our local rivals.