‘Towering’ Northampton political figure Geoff Howes dies aged 67

Geoff Howes, as Mayor of Northampton, blows the whistle to start the 1990 charity run around the Racecourse from outside the Labour Club in Earl Street.
Geoff Howes, as Mayor of Northampton, blows the whistle to start the 1990 charity run around the Racecourse from outside the Labour Club in Earl Street.
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Labour party members in Northampton are mourning the loss of former town mayor and ‘towering political figure’ Geoff Howes, who passed away this week aged 67.

Mr Howes last stood as a candidate for the reds in the 2009 county council elections, but had represented Castle Ward, along with John Dickie, as a councillor for more than 30 years.

During that time he served as Leader of the Labour Group and Mayor in 1990. Under John Dickie’s leadership of Northampton Borough Council, Mr Howes served as chair of the finance committee.

A statement from the Labour Group released today said: “We at Northampton Labour Party are hugely saddened to hear of the death of Geoff Howes this week and our deepest condolences go to his family. Geoff was a towering figure in Northampton politics not for years but decades.

“Geoff had a particular interest in the market and market square and was always brimming with ideas on how it could be improved. “He was deeply proud of the town in general. He was awarded the Freedom of the Borough in November 2001 in recognition of his achievements.”

Mr Howes, who had two children and was a keen rugby player, grew up in Duston, where he also went to school and joined the Labour party in 1965.

He joined British Timken as an apprentice in the 1960s, working there for 19 years before moving to the Labour Club.

His daughter, Deborah Lilley, said: “He was an amazing dad and an amazing grandad.

“He was a fair and generous man and he was liked by all councillors whatever their party.”