'A true champion'

PUBLISHED: 13:01 01 February 2008 | UPDATED: 11:40 29 April 2010

Cliff Edwards

Cliff Edwards

FENLAND district councillor and a former chairman of Wisbech St Mary Parish Council, Councillor Cliff Edwards, has died. Mr Edwards, 71, died on Sunday at Queen Elizabeth Hospital, King s Lynn, after a three-year battle with cancer. He was carrying out hi

FENLAND district councillor and a former chairman of Wisbech St Mary Parish Council, Councillor Cliff Edwards, has died.

Mr Edwards, 71, died on Sunday at Queen Elizabeth Hospital, King's Lynn, after a three-year battle with cancer. He was carrying out his council duties until just before Christmas.

After living in Wisbech, Mr Edwards, right, moved to Guyhirn 38 years ago when he married his wife Jenny. The couple have three sons and five grandchildren.

Educated at Queen's Boys' School, Wisbech, he spent his National Service in Egypt and Cyprus as a Sergeant in the Royal Army Pay Corps. He went on to work for several local firms as a buyer for Dagless Ltd, Robert Wallace builders and for 12 years as a traffic co-ordinator for BRS. He took early retirement in 1996.

A lifelong Conservative, Mr Edwards decided to extend his interest in politics after retirement by serving as a councillor. He was elected to Fenland District Council in May 2003, representing Parson Drove and Wisbech St Mary, and was re-elected in 2007.

He became chairman of the parish council, vice-chairman of the Playing Field Association, vice-chairman of Guyhirn Community Centre Project, chairman of Cambridgeshire Association of Local Councils (Fenland) and a trustee of the Citizens Advice Bureau.

In January 2007, as parish council chairman, he was presented with the first Fenland Quality Council Award.

Wisbech St Mary parish, which is made up of three villages and two hamlets, was the first council in Fenland to qualify for the award.

Tim Pilsbury, Fenland Council chief executive, said: "I would like to pay tribute to Cliff and his selfless approach to community work."

Council leader Councillor Geoff Harper said: "Cllr Edwards was a hard-working councillor who was particularly interested in championing the needs of Fenland's older population and villages.

"We shall miss him and our thoughts are with his family at this sad time."

His funeral service will be at Wisbech St Mary Parish Church on Tuesday, February 12, followed by burial at Guyhirn.

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