No this is is not a obituary, Dave is still very much alive and kicking but it is a tribute to a man who has done so much for Lydiate over the past 25 years or so. I made mention of Dave in part of a recent posting about the recent local elections but here is a more detailed tribute to him.
Lydiate environmental campaigners presenting Dave Russell with a petition to try to save the Green Belt from development around Lydiate
Dave lost his seat on Lydiate Parish Council in the recent elections and whilst this is the way things can go once you stand for public office I was genuinely shocked that my fellow Lydiate residents (in Lydiate North Ward) decided to show Dave the electoral door so to speak.
Dave and Pam Russell
Dave has been Chairperson of Lydiate Parish Council for as long as I can remember and with his lovely wife Pam is a leading light in the Maghull & Lydiate History Society. Here are just a few things that Dave has done for Lydiate:-
* He led the campaign to get Lydiate Village Centre built together with the then Clerk to Lydiate Parish Council and Andrew Blackburn. In doing so they brought in a £500,000 lottery grant.
* Dave has been passionate about the upkeep and maintenance of St Catherine’s Abbey and has been pushing and shoving all kinds of organisations to do their bit to help preserve and maintain this famous local Lydiate landmark.
* He started Lydiate Civic Day which has now been taken over as Lydiate Festival.
* As a passionate walker he has campaigned for the upkeep of the local footpath network.
* Dave is also a passionate about Lydiate as a community and has fought to retain it’s unique semi rural nature and character. Battling against property developers and Sefton Council he led the Parish Council to become a prominent environmental campaign group.
I really don’t know why the good people of Lydiate North Ward decided to ask Dave to leave and close the door after him but whatever the reason’s I think all we Lydiate residents owe Dave a huge debt of gratitude for his selfless campaigning for the community he loves. As a Parish Councillor Dave did not not get paid for his work, he did it because he thought Lydiate was worth fighting for.
Whatever you decided to do next Dave do it with the knowledge that we think of you as a good and decent man who more than did his bit for Lydiate – Mr. Lydiate is indeed the right title for you.
Maybe in 25 years another Mr Lydiate will have come along – Let’s hope so.