Former Mayor of Northampton and 'county cricket club legend' passes away in Spain

Trevor Bailey, 76, died on January 25 in Spain. Pictured here with Northamptonshire cricketer Ben Duckett. Mr Bailey was a passionate cricket supporter.
Trevor Bailey, 76, died on January 25 in Spain. Pictured here with Northamptonshire cricketer Ben Duckett. Mr Bailey was a passionate cricket supporter.
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A former Mayor of Northampton and a popular supporter of the County Cricket Club has died.

Trevor Bailey, 76, passed away from a sudden heart attack while on holiday with a close friend in Spain yesterday.

Mayor Bailey receives his chain in 1987.

Mayor Bailey receives his chain in 1987.

Mr Bailey was the 798th Mayor of Northampton and a Northampton Borough Councillor for 32 years.

Tributes poured in from friends of Mr Bailey who say they will remember him for his sense of humour and "wonderful smile."

Diane Ward, a good friend of Mr Bailey and his mayoress during his year of service, said: "Trevor and I have known each other for 50 years and we were very close friends.

"He was such a likeable person. He always smiled when he turned to face you. We loved our cricket and spent many of our summers at the cricket field.

He was well known for his "sense of humour" and "wonderful smile,"

He was well known for his "sense of humour" and "wonderful smile,"

"The club met together today and we had a wonderful time remembering him. Everyone had a happy memory to share and we laughed a lot. And he loved his food. He was liked by all and everyone knew him.

"We had a wonderful year together as mayor and mayoress and shared many happy memories. We're all going to miss him tremendously."

Christopher Malpas, the current Mayor of Northampton said: “We were saddened to hear of the sudden passing of Honorary Alderman Trevor Bailey on Wednesday 26 January.

“I knew Trevor well since we fought for the same seat in 2003. He couldn’t have been more supportive when I won the seat and we’ve been good friends ever since.

Mayor Bailey with his Mayoress, Diane Ward. They were never a couple and Mr Bailey chose her as they were "very good friends."

Mayor Bailey with his Mayoress, Diane Ward. They were never a couple and Mr Bailey chose her as they were "very good friends."

“As a tribute to his work in Northampton, not just within the council but for many other community groups too, we will be holding a one minute silence during the full Council meeting on Monday 30 January so that colleagues who knew him can come and pay their respects.”

At first an electrician, Mr Bailey became a councillor for Abington Ward in 1971, and later served as district councillor for Lumbertubs.

He was elected Mayor of Northampton in 1987. On accepting his chain of office, mayor-elect Bailey said: "I feel very proud at becoming mayor of the town which I was born and grew up in.

"I love Northampton, warts and all. This is the proudest day of my life."

Mayor Bailey samples the fare at the 62nd Northampton Show. He attended 542 engagements in his year as mayor, breaking the Northampton record in 1988. Friends say he "will be missed by all."

Mayor Bailey samples the fare at the 62nd Northampton Show. He attended 542 engagements in his year as mayor, breaking the Northampton record in 1988. Friends say he "will be missed by all."

In his year as mayor, Mr Bailey attended 542 engagements, which broke the record for Northampton in 1988.

One letter written to the Chronicle & Echo in 1988 reads: "I must say it: what a lovely man our busy mayor is.

"Every night we open our papers, and there he is again, smiling away and obviously enjoying his many official engagements.

"Thank you from all who are part of Northampton. Carry on cheering us up with that happy, smiling face."

Mr Bailey was a Labour councillor for Northampton Borough Council for 30 years and also served as a county councillor from 1973 to 1977. He was made an honorary alderman in 2005.

During his career, he was the Borough Council chairman of the transport committee, a member of the highways and policy and resources committees, and ran the World Young Women's Christians Association for Northampton. His fundraising through the mayor's fund was donated to different youth services. In later years worked extensively for the Northampton Twinning Association.

Councillor Danielle Stone said: “Trevor was a kind and gentle man and as a councillor and mayor gave many years’ service to our town. He was well respected and liked across the political spectrum.

"He still regularly attended civic events and some council meetings. Recently he has done much work with Northampton Twinning Association and really was a driving force behind it. He will be greatly missed by us all. My condolences to family and friends.”

Mr Bailey was also the chairman and a lifetime member of the Northampton County Cricket Club Supporters.

The group, who met on January 26 for a monthly lunch, dedicated the meal to Mr Bailey.

Northamptonshire cricketer Ben Duckett said in a tweet: "Shocking news, thoughts go out to his family. Top guy and great supporter."

Another Northamptonshire cricketer, Alex Wakely, tweeted: "Sad, sad news. Absolute legend and the most loyal supporter. He will be missed by all."