Tributes have been paid to a long-standing Moorlands councillor who sadly passed away last week. Councillor Richard Alcock, who has stood on both Cheadle Town Council and Staffordshire Moorlands District Council for more than three decades, passed away at his home in Cheadle on Friday (January 7).
Tributes have been paid to a long-standing Moorlands councillor who sadly passed away last week.
Councillor Richard Alcock, who has stood on both Cheadle Town Council and Staffordshire Moorlands District Council for more than three decades, passed away at his home in Cheadle on Friday (January 7).
Fellow Cheadle Town councillors, past and present, have paid their respects to Richard who was passionate about Cheadle and surrounding area. Over the years he had successfully campaigned for many community causes and improvements in the area, most recently the installation of traffic lights at Freehay crossroads.
Cheadle Town Mayor councillor Sue Walley led the tributes from the town council, she said: “On Friday morning, I learned that our friend and colleague, councillor Richard Alcock, had died at his farm on Rakeway Road.
“This loss was clearly a huge shock to myself, and many others in the town.
“Richard was elected to the Cheadle Town Council on April 23, 1990, and welcomed by the then Mayor, councillor A Vallance.
“He was subsequently elected to serve on the Staffordshire Moorlands District Council in 1991.
“Richard was first and foremost a man of the countryside, happiest on his farm with his cows.
“Whenever he had a cow in calf, he would not hesitate to inform councillors that he needed to leave the meeting on time.
“He was a truly independent councillor, and the town of Cheadle really mattered to him. He always spoke his mind on a number of topics, and represented the electorate within his South East Ward and Freehay with great passion.”
Cllr Walley continued: “Whilst in chambers, Richard was known as someone who would only speak when he had something constructive to say, often to do with housing and planning applications.
“Richard campaigned for many years to provide the village of Freehay with traffic lights at its crossroads, and it will remain one of his many legacies that he succeeded.
“My most recent memory of Richard is taking part in a photo shoot on the newly installed benches at Tean Road Recreation Ground; something that was out of character given he did not necessarily seek publicity for his work.
“I know that Richard had a very close relationship with our town clerks, and could frequently be found in the office conveying his wisdom and wit.
“Richard will be remembered as a very much respected friend, colleague and councillor.
“The passion and commitment he showed to his South East Ward, and particularly the Parish of Freehay, spanned many years. He will be remembered fondly by many.”
Here are further tributes to Richard which have been paid by fellow town councillors:
Cllr Kate Martin said: “Over the years, I have worked with Richard. Firstly, when I supported the District Youth Forum and recently for the last eight years as a town and district councillor.
“Richard always supported the young people at events and one of my fond memories of Richard was when he was asked by a young person to solve the problem of seagulls at the high schools.
“His response was: “Well it’s that quarry, they think they are by the sea.”
Cllr Martin added: “Richard was instrumental in fighting for the traffic lights at Freehay and never gave up.
“He always supported anyone who was against housing and always reminded us about the bypass needed at Cheadle.
“I will miss him dearly, and his one-liners – best of all, if meetings went on too long: “Must go, I have got to put the cows and geese in.”
“God bless Richard, rest in peace.”
Cllr Liz Haines said: “My thoughts are with Richard’s family and friends at this time. He was always representing the views of many of us living in Cheadle that the rural characteristics of Cheadle should be protected from excessive housing and traffic.
“Councillor Richard Alcock will be missed by so many including myself.”
Cllr Dennis Wilson said: “As a new councillor, getting to know Richard was a real joy. A lovely man, he will be greatly missed. Very sad.”
Cllr Gary Bentley said: “I met Richard when I was 15 alongside my dad when he sold classic motorbike parts. Then I was fortunate to work alongside him as a councillor.
“He was Cheadle through and through. He was passionate about the Freehay crossroads traffic lights which got put in. I think it’d be nice to have a plaque to him there.”
Cllr Greg Powell said: “I am very sad to hear of the passing of councillor Richard Alcock.
“I have known Richard for the best part of 20 years, I’m sure there are many that have known Richard longer.
“Living near to me on Rakeway Road, I could always talk to Richard about the concerns of residents and he was always pro-active as a district councillor, doing the best he could to sort out problems for the community.
“He has been a strong defender of the best of Cheadle’s charm and character. He took time to listen to and take on board the views of the community.
“Not always eloquent, but always passionately committed to his informed and consistent views.
“His dedication to the community and their interests is reflected in the huge voter support he has secured over many years.
“Not just working for South East but all across Cheadle at district level. As a farmer, he always had a strong determination to protect the countryside and all that makes Cheadle the special place that it is.”
Former councillor for more than 30 years, Peter Elkin, said: “I’m very shocked to hear of Richard’s passing. He was a true councillor and was independent like myself.
“He campaigned against the overdevelopment of housing within Cheadle. If there was a job to be done by a councillor, Richard was the man.
“He always did a lot from being a very young man. He never missed a council meeting either.
“I think it’s a great, great loss to the town and he’ll be sorely missed.”
The Times & Echo would like to extend its condolences to the friends and family of Richard.
Richard was a long time contributor, contact and voice in our publications over a vast number of years and will be sorely missed.
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