Ipswich: More tributes flood in for former mayor Don Edwards

Tributes to former mayor Don Edwards continue to flood in as those who knew him remember his ‘welcoming’ and ‘kind’ nature.

Heartfelt tributes have been paid after the sad death of Mr Edwards – known as Donny, who represented the Gainsborough ward on the borough for nearly 30 years.

The 76-year-old popular former mayor died at Addenbrooke’s Hospital, Cambridge, on Saturday night following a brain haemorrhage.

His wife, Wanda, was with him, and his son David broke the devastating news to his many friends and party colleagues.

Today, a nephew of Mr Edwards paid tribute to a “terrific communicator”.

Jon George, of Ipswich, reflected on days gone by with a man he took “great pride” in calling an uncle.

He said: “The man was a terrific communicator, not only did he speak with passion, but he did something so few people do – he listened to what you had to say.

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“Of all the fond memories I have of him, it is Donny’s impromptu, brilliant singing performance at my wedding reception which lingers – how many people can say the mayor sang for them on the day they married.”

Liz Harsant, conservative council leader, joined the list of shocked councillors in paying tribute a “caring gentleman”.

“He was a very kind and welcoming character,” she said. “I remember when I first met him and he was so very welcoming.

“We struck a friendship from the moment that we met, regardless of us being opposition.

“My thoughts are with Wanda and his family in this difficult time.

“One of his great loves was Ipswich Town Football Club and I will always remember him wearing a scarf as Mayor.

“He was a such a gentleman, a caring gentleman – and you don’t get too many of those these days.”

Mr Edwards was known for his love of Gainsborough, although in recent years he and Wanda had lived in Cumberland Street, off Norwich Road.

He represented the Gainsborough area from 1979 until 2008 when he stepped down because of ill-health. He was also mayor in 2000/01.

n What are your lasting memories of Don Edwards? Write to Your Letters, Evening Star, 30 Lower Brook Street, Ipswich, IP4 1AN, or e-mail evening starletters@eveningstar.co.uk