In memory of our dear friend, Alderman David Becket

I first met David when he attended the AGM of the party, having moved back into the area from Newbury. I was immediately taken aback by his enthusiasm for Liberal Democrat principles, and his strong desire to change things for the better in whatever way he could. My lasting impression of David is, he was a man of integrity, with strong principles which he did not let go of easily, even when times were tough and things were not going his way. He made his view known at every stage of a discussion and was not afraid of fighting his corner even if it made him unpopular for a short time, if he thought in the long term it was for the good of the cause.

Despite his determination to succeed he was a man who gained a lot of respect, even from those who did not agree with him. He would take time to listen to other people’s views and then put his forward. He was also a man with a great sense of compassion and would take time out of his busy day to talk to people and help them when he could. I, like many more will be indebted to David for the support he has given me on numerous occasions when I have wanted reliable advice, and a critical friend. He was a wise compassionate man.

David will be known across the Borough as the man who introduced recycling to every household, the man who was passionate about the environment. He was proud to be the portfolio holder who made kerbside recycling happen, and enabled the Council to win award after award for how Newcastle delivered the service. He was also an authority on transport, housing and green belt issues and was instrumental in our party’s submission of the local plan consultation process, to our local authority.

David was a family man who was happiest when in their company. He often spoke with affection of what they meant to him and was proud to share their achievements. David was an honourable man. A man of principles and high standards, and a genuine servant to many. I know he will be sadly missed by many and Newcastle is the worse for his departure from us. We send our condolences to his family.

Marion Reddish. Leader of the Liberal Democrat group, Newcastle Under Lyme Borough Council

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