Residents mourn ‘lovely man who gave all for village’
The community in Sturry has been saddened by the death of village stalwart and former parish councillor Maurice Collingwood.
The popular 74-year-old, who spent his entire life in the parish, recently lost a short battle with cancer.
He leaves his wife Stella – with who he would have celebrated his golden wedding anniversary in November – and daughters Rachel and Olwen.
But he also leaves a legacy of community spirit in Sturry where he organised and encouraged many activities and initiatives including the carnival and fun runs.
He also served as a governor at the old Sturry Secondary School.
Parish council chairman and family friend Ashley Bubb said: “Maurice will be sorely missed. He was a lovely man who gave his all for Sturry and really pulled the community together.”
Mr Collingwood’s roots were Welsh and his grandfather came to Kent to be a sinker at the Chislet Colliery.
He trained to be a carpenter and joiner and later became a lecturer in construction at Canterbury College. As a young man, he was also a keen footballer and cricketer although his sporting passion was watching Wales play rugby. He also loved tending his big garden.
Mr Collingwood, who lived in Island Road, was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer at the end of September and died on January 10.
His widow Stella praised the Pilgrims Hospice for the support it had given the family in his final days.
She said: “We wanted to keep him at home and the hospice nurses were marvellous. We can’t thank them enough.”
A big turnout is expected at his funeral at Sturry Church at 11am on Monday, February 12, which will be followed by a cremation at Barham and a wake at the Golden Lion in Broad Oak.
Mrs Collingwood added: “We are encouraging everyone to wear something red as that is the colour of the Wales rugby team and there will also be some stirring Welsh songs, which Maurice would have loved.”
Sturry community stalwart Maurice Collingwood has died