A champion of the community passes

Roy Sharp.
Roy Sharp.

A man who spent his life working to improve the Daventry and wider community, and championing justice, has died.

Roy Sharp died peacefully after a short spell in hospital on Sunday, May 17, a day after his 78th birthday.

Over his life he championed the local community, worked to improve the lot of the average person, and helped ensure our local heritage was looked after for years to come.

Roy was born in Daventry in 1937 and lived in the town all his life, other than during his National Service with the RAF.

As a youngster he joined the Scouts and supported the organisation for many years.

An engineer by trade, Roy worked at Smiths Industry in Rugby, becoming shop steward for the Amalgamated Engineering Union at the age of 24. He continued as the union convenor there for 25 years, and became secretary of the Daventry branch of the union as well. In the 1980s he was presented with the union’s Award of Merit for his service.

Later Roy helped found the town’s Trade Council and was secretary of the organisation for most of its existence.

At the age of just 26 Roy was elected to Daventry Borough Council, becoming one of the youngest to serve on the body. Years later he was one of the first members of the newly formed Daventry Town Council where he worked to secure the town’s heritage and helped found what would become Daventry Museum.

Roy was also closely involved with the Daventry Community Centre over the years, starting in the early 1960s.

Roy served as a magistrate on the Daventry bench from 1973, and was also a member of the Northamptonshire NHS Executive Council, and the body that replaced it the Family Practitioner Committee.

Roy’s wife of 56 years Celia Sharp said: “Roy was a man for the people – he wanted to see fairness. As a magistrate he would judge everyone fairly.

“He was a man for the working people, and wanted equality for them.

“Roy was a very happy fellow and a quiet man. His home was his life and he was a real family man. He took on many roles, all of which were voluntary and on top of his job.”

After leaving Smiths Industry, Roy set up his own health and safety consultancy working with many firms in and around the Daventry area for around 10 years before he retired in 2001.

Celia said: “We both loved walking, as we managed to walk the entire length of the Grand Union Canal – although not in one go! We enjoyed gardening and going to museums. Roy’s particular hobby was wood turning, and he won an award recently for it.”

Roy and Celia have two sons, Jed and Tim and their partners Carolyn andTina, plus granddaughters Chrystal and Coral and their partners Chris and Mike.