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Councillor Mohammed Farooq: Peterborough College Alumnus Thrives as Leader of Peterborough City Council

22 February 2024

Peterborough College, part of Inspire Education Group, celebrates the success of Councillor Mohammed Farooq, who was a student at the College in the years 1984 and 1987. Councillor Farooq has gone on to win multiple honours and awards, including the British Empire Medal, and is now Leader of Peterborough City Council.

Since November 2023, Councillor Farooq has been the Leader of the Peterborough City Council.

Councillor Farooq’s journey began in 1984 as an Electrical Installation student at Peterborough College. In 1987, he then progressed to study a BEng in Electrical and Electronic Engineering at London Southbank University. Following the completion of an undergraduate degree, Mohammed took on various management positions in telecom engineering with British Rail between 1992 and 2001. It was during his time working for British Rail where he also completed an MBA in Economics with The Open University.

Following the completion of an MBA, Mohammed went on to manage a portfolio of investments as well as delving into property investment. For over 20 years, he has been an active member of the community as an esteemed Economist, Businessman and Philanthropist.

Councillor Farooq also previously took ownership of a popular Indian restaurant in Hampton, which he used as a platform to fundraise and raise awareness for numerous charities as well as community groups. In the years 2013 to 2016, Mohammed was a sponsor for Magic Breakfast, where he funded breakfast clubs for children at Orton Winyates and St John’s Primary School in Peterborough, as well as one school in Middlesbrough. For his charitable work, Councillor Farooq accepted the Community Civic Award from Cllr John Peach, former Mayor of Peterborough.

Cllr Farooq attended the ground-breaking ceremony for the Centre for Green Technology, that is partly funded by Cambridgeshire & Peterborough Combined Authority (CPCA), providing £2.471 million via the Transforming Cities Fund and £400,000 from the Local Growth Fund, further to the £1.9 million package from Peterborough City Council via the Towns Fund.

In November 2015, Farooq also received the Melvin Jones Fellowship from President Bill Peacock and Secretary David Pope of Peterborough Lions Club. A Melvin Jones Fellowship is granted to those who reflect the Lions’ commitment to humanitarian work and is only rarely given to non-Lions. Named after the founder of Lions it is the highest honour available within the organisation. It was presented to Farooq by the Peterborough Lions Club in tribute to his consistent and long-standing support of a wide range of charitable and community activities in Peterborough and beyond.

In 2016, Councillor Farooq was also awarded the British Empire Medal, recognising his longstanding charitable support across a wide range of community-based organisations including smaller groups who might otherwise struggle to raise much-needed funds.

From October 2019 to May 2023, Farooq was Chairman of Peterborough Limited. Wholly owned by Peterborough City Council, this trading company was established to bring in and manage previously outsourced contracts more flexibly. Under the umbrella of Aragon Direct Services, these responsibilities cover cleaning services, building maintenance, waste and recycling and transport services.

Since November 2023, Councillor Farooq has been the Leader of the Peterborough City Council. He is now responsible for implementing policies, delivering services, approving new policies (other than major policies), playing a leadership role, and generally promoting the economic, environmental and social well-being of the city. 

Peterborough College, part of Inspire Education Group, takes immense pride in Councillor Mohammed Farooq’s remarkable journey, celebrating his achievements as a testament to the transformative power of education and community leadership.

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