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Final farewell to town's 'George Best'

PUBLISHED: 23:12 15 June 2005 | UPDATED: 05:56 02 March 2010

MOURNERS will be coming from far and wide for tomorrow's (THUR) funeral of former footballer Clive 'Buck' Kent.

Over 300 people are expected to fill St John's Church, Cauldwell Hall Road, Ipswich for the funeral of the popular 47-year-old, who died suddenly and was found dead in bed.

MOURNERS will be coming from far and wide for tomorrow's (THUR) funeral of former footballer Clive 'Buck' Kent.

Over 300 people are expected to fill St John's Church, Cauldwell Hall Road, Ipswich for the funeral of the popular 47-year-old, who died suddenly and was found dead in bed.

The service starts at 2.30pm and former school friend Benny Osborne has flown all the way round the world to be present.

Having just bought a house near Sydney he thought he would miss the funeral until a group of Clive's friends in Ipswich clubbed together to come up with his airfare.

"Benny was a big mate of Clive's at school, and they also played for Coplestonians football club together," said Clive's brother Barry.

"He emigrated 17 years ago, but has stayed in touch and so wanted to be here for the service."

Clive worked as a warehouse supervisor at Masons Paper Company in Ipswich, and former company owner and managing director Peter Kenny will be giving an address.

Work colleagues and customers from Ipswich and other Masons' branches will also be present, while there will a full compliment of past and present members of the Coplestonians football team that plays in the Metaltec SIL.

Dave Little, who has managed the Copleston first team for many years, said: "Buck, as he was known to everyone, was the George Best of local football.

"He was the most talented player I have seen in this area, and I am sure he could have gone on to greater things.

"He was one of the boys and remained a loyal Coplestonians follower. Buck had a telepathic link with his brother Barry on the field and he was part of our team that won Division One, played in senior football and also the final of the Suffolk Junior Cup.

"His death is a big loss and a great shock."

Wolfe Powell, chairman of Coplestonians and also a former deputy headmaster at Copleston, will also give an address.

Barry added: "The response to Clive's death has been unbelievable.

"The family has received so many cards and messages it is untrue.

"There has been a general feel for Buck, and we have held two sessions in his memory at St John's Conservative Club, Kirby Street with over 80 people attending.

"It is difficult to estimate, but we are expecting 300 people to be at the service.

"Clive and I lived in the same house for 46 years, played football together and shared a great deal. He has now gone, but our partnership will go on.

"From the response to his death he was such a popular guy."

St John's Conservative Club will be open for all mourners after the service.

Clive leaves two children, Lucy aged 15 and Harry aged 13.


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