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Dave Roberts, 1940-2015

5 June 2015

Longstanding TSSA member Dave Roberts sadly passed away on Friday 29th May leaving his very devoted wife, three daughters and one son.

Dave had over some 40+ years become an iconic member of TSSA. An active member of Derby P&T Branch in the 70s and 80s, Dave continued to be a Branch Officer when it became the East Midlands Technical Branch. Dave was also a very proactive Rep and also member of the P&T Line Committee. A regular for his Branch at Conference, Dave served six years on the EC and two full terms on the Standing Orders Committee. Whether Chair of SOC or not, Dave was sharp on those who tried to abuse Conference Procedure. He was a natural and very skilled orator, and there is little doubt he could have been an excellent President, but high office he did not want.

Outside the union, Dave was a very committed member of the Co-op movement. Elected some 30 years ago, he took on the role of Director of the Midlands Society, then President and Vice President for three years each. At the same time he took a very proactive role in the Derby Trades Council. The roles of Secretary and also Chairman he carried out with rare skill.

David came late to politics, only joining the Labour Party around 16 years ago. However his oratory and intellect soon had him selected for the safe Derwent Ward on Derby Council where he served for 14 years until 2014. The Derby Telegraph has devoted half a page to fulsome tributes to Dave’s Council service, which included some years as Deputy Leader of the Council, quoting many in the Derby Labour scene from Margaret Becket to his Council colleagues. Here also ceremonial office never appealed and Dave declined to be Mayor of Derby on more than one occasion.

In all the arenas that Dave graced, his attributes that shone through were not only his intellect and oratory skill, but also his care and compassion for his fellows. Abrupt he sometimes may have sounded, but always underneath was a very caring person who is going to be sorely missed by so many. R.I.P

Dave's funeral will take place at noon on Wednesday 17th June at Derby Crematorium.

Flowers are welcome or if preferred donations to either:

  • British Heart Foundation
  • Mesothelioma UK or
  • Railway Benevolent Fund

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