People Remembered - David Williams

Recently I did a Google search to try and make contact with an old friend whom I met when I was a student nurse at the NWH between 1959 – 62. His name was Eric Lawson and he worked for a period in the hospital’s Social Work Department. Eric was a larger than life character and was known for his strong commitment to socialist ideas. He lodged in the nurse’s home while he was at the hospital and I am sure that his co-residents at the time (ie. Keith Warburton, Arnold Ainsley and others) will remember him. Sadly my search came up with an obituary but I was somewhat comforted by the discovery that Eric had
gone on to make a substantial and positive impact on his community and he lives of many people who had dealings with him. The West Yorkshire News had this to say about him:

Obituary: Eric Lawson
Jul 29 2008 by Barry Gibson, Huddersfield Daily Examiner

Former Councillor Eric Lawson joined the Labour Party when he was just 15 and went on to represent two areas in Kirklees.Mr Lawson, who represented Heckmondwike and Newsome, died in Huddersfield Royal Infirmary aged 75. Hewas born in Manchester and did his National Service in the RAF before
becoming a lab technician for ICI. Mr Lawson went on to study social administration at the London School of Economics.

He moved to the Spen Valley in the 1970s and ran a market stall in Cleckheaton. During this time he also ran the best-selling amateur newspaper in England, theSpen Valley Spark, with a circulation of 2,500. His journalistic nom deplume was Big Ears.

In 1983 he was elected to represent Heckmondwike on Kirklees Council, but lost his seat four years later.
In1992, having moved to Paddock, Mr Lawson was elected to represent the Newsome ward. He chaired the council’s environment committee in the mid-1990s.

Councillors stood for a minute’s silence in memory of Mr Lawson at last week’s monthly meeting. Clr Margaret Bates was among those who paid tribute to him.
The Liversedge and Gomersal Conservative said: “I thought he was a great guy and a great character. I
wonder what heaven will be like with him there.”

Mr Lawson is survived by wife Carole, and their children Dan, Jodie and Matthew.

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