SNETTISHAM: Former Mayor who loved music and arts

Borough Mayor of King's Lynn and West Norfolk 2008-2009 David Johnson with the King John Cup.
Borough Mayor of King's Lynn and West Norfolk 2008-2009 David Johnson with the King John Cup.
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Further tributes have been paid this week to former borough mayor and serving councillor David Johnson, who died last Thursday.

Mr Johnson, 75, of Station Road, Snettisham, was diagnosed with cancer of the gullet when he was West Norfolk’s mayor in 2008-09.

His widow, Sheila, told the Lynn News: “He had an operation and recovered from it, but it returned just over a year ago.

“He couldn’t get around and gradually deteriorated and for the last three months had been virtually confined to home.”

At Thursday’s West Norfolk Council cabinet meeting, council leader Nick Daubney called for a minute’s silence in memory of Mr Johnson.

He said: “David gave a great service to this borough as a councillor and as mayor.

“We knew he was ill for some time. But, despite what I understand to be a pretty serious illness, he continued to undertake his duties.”

Mr Johnson was a regular contributor to the Lynn News, writing theatre and concert reviews for our entertainments pages since 1964.

Lynn Festival chairman Alison Croose said: “David was a great lover of classical music and was always very enthusiastic about the big names and special performances King’s Lynn Festival has brought to the town over many years.”

Borough councillor and entertainments columnist Andy Tyler added: “I knew him as a fellow borough councillor and reviewer for the Lynn News of classical music and varied entertainment. He was a former borough mayor (well deserved) and had extensive knowledge of music and performance. I always found him warm, friendly and full of sound advice. A lovely man and I shall miss him.”

Mr Johnson was born in Brancaster and lived in West Norfolk all his life.

On leaving Fakenham Grammar School at 16, he worked at Legge’s menswear shop in Hunstanton High Street, at the start of 50 years working in the clothing trade.

He became a partner with another ex-Legge’s employee, David Green, in a clothing store they named Davids, in Westgate.

Mr Johnson retired in November, 2003, following his election to the borough council, as an Independent, for Snettisham so that he could devote more time to his council duties.

He first entered local government when still in his 20s and went on to become the youngest ever chairman of Brancaster Parish Council.

Mrs Johnson said her husband enjoyed singing in the choir at St Mary’s Church in Snettisham, where he was also churchwarden.

A service of thanksgiving for his life will be held at St Mary’s Church on February 18 at 4pm.