28 FEB 2014

Tunbridge Wells mourns death of Deputy Mayor Councillor Colin Bothwell

Colin Bothwell was a local hero and will be dearly missed by his legion of friends and constituents across Southborough and Tunbridge Wells.

Colin fizzed with life. He threw all his energy, organisational talents, good humour and hard work into helping the community, whether as a town and borough councillor, in his involvement in countless local charities and good causes, as a friend to so many people, or as a devoted family man. In fact, it sometimes seemed to me that he considered everyone in Southborough to be family.

Colin was a popular and successful Mayor of Southborough and, even though his year as Deputy Mayor of Tunbridge Wells was interrupted by his illness, he would never be held back and was out and about attending civic events during the month before he died.

Colin was a staunch Conservative, and he was a great campaigner for our party. Politics was never divisive with Colin – after all, wasn't everyone working for the same community? It's a mark of the man that the people who were his political opponents were also among his closest friends.

Colin was warm, generous, funny and kind – he loved people, he loved company and he loved a party. He also loved to roll his sleeves up to get things done – in his element when up a ladder putting up the Southborough Christmas lights or with his team at the crack of dawn setting out the stalls for the Southborough Family Fun Day.

As all friends of Colin know, he would have loved to have become Mayor of Tunbridge Wells in May: it would have been a dream come true. But Colin's illness took from him – and from us – what a wonderful year that would have been. Yet the truth is, he didn't need the badge. Colin Bothwell more than earned the right to be regarded with the admiration and affection of the whole community as one of the people Tunbridge Wells can be most proud of, and he will be long remembered.

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