Published: Wednesday, 10th August 2022
It is with sadness that we learned that Cllr John Collop, ward councillor for the Gaywood Clock area, passed away on Friday, 5 August 2022. Our thoughts are with his family and friends at this time.
John served on the council from 1999 to 2007, becoming a cabinet member in 2002. He was re-elected and served again from 2011 to 2022. He was leader of the Labour Group from 2016-2020. Over the years he has chaired the Cabinet Scrutiny Committee, been Vice Chair of the Audit Committee and King's Lynn Area Consultative Committee. He also served on various committees including Planning, Licensing, Appointments, Development and Estates, Resources and Performance and Corporate performance panel.
Cllr Stuart Dark, MBE, Leader of the Borough Council of King's Lynn & West Norfolk, said: "John was a long-serving, effective and dedicated councillor for West Norfolk who is, and will continue to be, sorely missed. He was respected by his fellow councillors and officers here, not only for this but because he was clearly a genuine and gentle man in the way he consistently behaved to us all.
“I know his beloved wife Sandra and son Ashley have been touched by the messages and support they’ve received since John’s passing and my and everyone here's thoughts are with them and his many friends at this most awful time."
Cllr Charles Joyce, Borough Councillor for South Lynn and leader of the Labour group, said: "John was a huge influence in the Labour Party and at the borough council. We stood shoulder to shoulder as brothers in many campaigns, be they making life better for all or opposing an incinerator. John used experience gained from his time in business as a senior manager of a highly respected national company and later as a self-employed sole trader to help keep us all on track which at times resembled a Labour of Hercules. His knowledge on many subjects, especially housing, was immense. John was often my go-to encyclopaedia and from whom I would always consult."
The Mayor of the Borough of King's Lynn & West Norfolk, Cllr Lesley Bambridge, said: "I have known John since I first became a councillor some fifteen years ago. It’s like losing a friend when a council colleague dies. I was particularly pleased that he was well enough to accompany me to give out Jubilee coins to the pupils of Howard Junior. He really enjoyed the visit and welcomed a tour of the school."
Lorraine Gore, Chief Executive of the Borough Council of King's Lynn & West Norfolk, added: "From an officer perspective, I have nothing but positive thoughts of John. He was one of life's true gentlemen. We had many discussions on a wide range of subjects which I always valued. Our thoughts and sincere condolences are with his wife and son at this difficult time."
John's wife, Cllr Sandra Collop, has advised John’s funeral will be held at St Faith’s Church, Gaywood on Thursday 25 August at 2pm, followed by internment at Gayton Road Cemetery. Sandra has asked if mourners could wear something red. She has also confirmed that flowers are welcome, or donations to Tapping House and the Queen Elizabeth Hospital King’s Lynn Charitable Fund for making the wards dementia friendly.