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Death of Charles Kennedy - Tributes from East Midlands Liberal Democrats

June 2, 2015 9:56 AM
Originally published by East Midlands Liberal Democrats

Charles Kennedy 5There is sadness and shock at the news of the death ‎of Charles Kennedy.

He was a man of great‎ charm, intelligence, warmth and commitment.

Charles served the Country and his constituents for over 30 years. He served our Party as a member, activist, MP and Leader. He was a deeply committed and gifted man.

Our thoughts are very much with his family and friends at this time.



Cllr Phil Knowles

East Midlands Regional Chair

Sign the book of condolences here

Julia Cambridge writes Today's news is absolutely heartbreaking. The Liberal Democrats are a family and it feels like we have lost our favourite brother.

Charles Kennedy was one of the greatest politicians of his generation, devoting his life to public service, having been elected as a Highlands MP at the age of 23. He went on to serve his beloved constituency for over 30 years.

For me he broke the mould of what a politician was 'supposed' to be and replaced it with a fresh, young, outspoken model.

It was inspirational to see my party being led by someone relevant and approachable.

The times that I was lucky enough to hear Charles speak he was refreshingly candid, passionate about the many things that he cared about like bringing more devolution to Scotland and helping people live better lives. He had a disarming manner, with this lilting Scottish voice and perfect inflection, His public speaking was much like he was in private: full of warmth and humanity.

His work for the people of Ross, Skye and Lochabar will be his greatest legacy, and I truly believe that is what was important to him politically; helping improve the lives of ordinary people.

Charles's ordinariness belied gifts few of us have, to be ordinary and yet distinguished, quiet, yet commanding.

His own words perhaps best reflect his humility, on losing his seat he was generous in his praise for the people who had helped him: "Thank you to the generation of voters, and then some, who put their trust in me."

We did trust Charles. He led the Liberal Democrats with his trademark compassion, honesty and decency for six years, delivered 62 MP's, spoke out in opposition to the war on terror in Iraq and brought comfort, friendship and genuine help to those who needed a step up.

Our thoughts are with Charles's friends and family. Their loss is immeasurable. It mustn't be forgotten in all the political tributes that he was a son, brother and father.

Julia Cambridge

Parliamentary Spokesperson for Chesterfield

Listen to Julia's tribute here

So sad to hear of Charles Kennedy's untimely death.

I only met him once, at a Regional Conference Leicester around 1992.

He joins a long list of politicians, including Ian McLeod, David Penhaligon, John Smith and Robin Cook, who departed before their time.

John Marriott

A gentle giant and one of the best leaders our party has had throughout its history.

You were right about Iraq Charlie as you were on so many other things.

You'll be sorely missed by us all but we'll keep fighting with a Liberal voice in your memory.

Robin Popley

The whole Liberal Democrat family will have been shocked and saddened by this morning's news of the death of our former Leader Charles Kennedy.

Even those who didn't know him personally will be aware of the remarkable contribution he made both as Leader and since then in forging a distinct Liberal Democrat stand on many issues, often in opposition to the Labour & Conservative consensus.

We are all the poorer for his passing and send his family & friends our deepest sympathy.

Leon Duveen