Tributes paid to Ipswich's 'best-loved shopkeeper' Hajara 'Sid' Singh
- Credit: Archant
Heartfelt tributes have been paid to one of Ipswich's greatest characters, shopkeeper Hajara 'Sid' Singh, who died aged 61.
Renowned for his cheeky personality and thick Suffolk accent, Mr Singh ran the tills – and later the Post Office – at his shop in Brunswick Road for more than 20 years alongside sons Babsy and Sunny. Before then, he ran shops in Tomline Road, Clapgate Lane and Suffolk Road.
The beloved grandfather of eight, whose father Kunnan Singh first opened a store in Cauldwell Hall Road over 40 years ago, sadly died suddenly at his home on Friday, January 15.
His son Babsy, also known as Tony, said his dad will be remembered by all for his positivity.
He said: "Dad was a lovely man who got on with everyone he knew, from the old ladies he called 'mum' to the young kids he called 'boy' and 'young lady'.
"He never forgot a face, the people he knew were like family to him. He was our brains and our guider, he was always on hand to help and would never say no to helping someone.
"It made his day seeing so many people's faces. He could go five years without seeing someone, but he'd still remember their name.
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"He was always a hard man to please, but deep down we knew he loved us so much and was always so proud."
Although a big Chelsea fan, Mr Singh would regularly talk to his customers about Ipswich Town and his days out at Stamford Bridge with his grandson Gurdita.
The former Tower Ramparts pupil and landlord was also renowned for his salesman skills, and famously always stocked every item a homeowner could ever need.
More than 400 people have shared their favourite memories of Mr Singh on social media, with former customers calling him a "wise and gentle legend". More than 50 bouquets of flowers have also been left outside the shop.
Tony added: "We'll never forget all the little names he gave us. He'd give customers random names.
"It is those little things that will always stick with us. It is just so sad he was taken so young, we had so many more things we wanted to do with him as a family."
EADT and Ipswich Star reporter Oliver Sullivan, who knew Mr Singh, added: "Mr Singh was truly one in a million.
"I and so many people who grew up in that part of town will always remember him for his humour, which never failed to make a grey day fade away.
"Ipswich has truly lost one of its greatest characters."