Tributes paid to 'Kettering champion' Mick Scrimshaw

He died yesterday after a battle with cancer

By Sam Wildman
Thursday, 28th July 2022, 11:18 am
Mick Scrimshaw
Mick Scrimshaw

Politicians from across the county have paid tribute after the death of ‘Kettering champion’ Mick Scrimshaw.

The popular former councillor died yesterday morning (Wednesday) aged 59 after a battle with cancer.

He led the opposition Labour group on Kettering Borough Council, where he represented the William Knibb ward, and also previously represented Northall on Northamptonshire County Council.

Mick Scrimshaw raises his hand at a meeting.

A Kettering Labour Party spokesman said: “Mick was a dedicated public servant who was solely committed to making his adopted home town a better place for all.

"He built alliances across political divides, held council administrations to account, championed Kettering and the wider borough with an unshakeable commitment for social justice and fairness.

“Most of all he was the best of men who we were lucky to call a friend. His number one priority was always his girls and our hearts go out to Shona, Abbey and Jess with a promise that the Labour family will always be there for them.

“Mick’s mantra was ‘all politics is local’ – and we'll keep the flame alive for him."

Mick Scrimshaw (left) presenting a cheque to the Keystone Youth Centre

Mick stood to be Kettering’s MP in the 2017 general election where he increased Labour’s vote share by 11.3 per cent as he came second to Conservative Philip Hollobone.

He stepped down from local politics last year because of his illness having spent countless hours helping constituents, as well as becoming involved with many local initiatives including Kettering Community Unit (KCU).

He was big on transparency and chaired a scrutiny committee, fought for cheaper car parking in Kettering and supported the campaign for a new swimming pool.

Kettering mayor Cllr Keli Watts (Lab) said: “So many of you will know the contribution Mick made to so many residents and organisations locally. In my capacity as mayor I honour him for the part he played in shaping our community.

"But I also honour him as his fellow ward councillor in the William Knibb ward for many, many years. I am only here because of Mick.”

Cllr Anne Lee (Lab), who represents Windmill on North Northants Council, paid tribute to her ‘role model, mentor and dear friend’.

She said: “We will all miss him more than words can say.”

Cllr Jim Hakewill (Ind) said: “What a super man, a gentleman – proud to have known and worked with him.”

Deputy leader of West Northants Council Cllr Adam Brown (Con) said: “He was a truly decent man who had the respect of everyone at the county council regardless of party politics.”

Cllr Ash Davies (Con), who sat on the opposite side of the Kettering Borough Council chamber, said: “Always admired his dedication, knowledge and enjoyed sharing a pint with him after a council meeting a few years ago.”

Former Corby Labour councillor Matt Reay said: “He was so well respected in the Northamptonshire Labour family and by the wider community in Kettering, which he loved.”

And Wellingborough’s Cllr Adam Henley (Lab) added: “I only knew Mick for a few years but he was a dedicated servant to his constituents across Kettering and would have definitely helped improve the new North Northants Council.”