Bungay mourns the loss of Town Mayor, Angela Brook

THE town of Bungay is this week mourning the loss of its Town Mayor, Angela Brook, who lost her long battle against cancer on Saturday.

Before Monday's December town council meeting the Rev Ian Byrne offered prayers in her memory and councillors and the public stood in a minute's silence for Mrs Brook, who was 69, a Freeman of the City of London, and took office as mayor in May.

Since then, until the last few weeks, she had filled the role with commitment and energy in the town where she grew up.

In a tribute to her deputy Town Mayor Terry Reeve said Mrs Brook was so proud to have become mayor in her home town and despite her ill health led the council with determination.

'She was a powerful presence in this council chamber, a mayor with clear views on how things should be done, well organised and dedicated to the role,' he said.

'As recently as last Thursday, two days before she passed away, she rang me on council issues. She was on top of council matters to the last. We should be grateful for her time on the council, a period which was sadly all too short, but which was eventful and controversial. She handled it all, and her illness, with great fortitude and courage, and her passing is a sad loss to the council, the town of Bungay, and most of all her family.

'She will be greatly missed and are sympathies go to her husband, David, and son Ben.'

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Mr Brook and their son, who had flown from Sydney Australia, were in the council chamber for the announcement.

Mrs Brook was born Angela Gwyneth Cobley at All Hallows Hospital, Ditchingham and as a child lived in Wingfield Street, Bungay. She went to St Mary's School in the town, and later Bungay Primary School. She won a scholarship to Welwyn Garden City School, before her father, took up a post in Chester with Hawker Siddeley Aviation.

After obtaining a degree in economics and a teaching certificate Mrs Brook taught at infant schools in London and Liverpool before joining the local education authority's television's service in London as a teacher. Her work involved producing and directing films and it was while there that she met her husband, a photographer. They had been married nearly 40 years.

She worked for a time with Carol Vorderman, and also did a lot of work for Vauxhall Motors.

Later she became medical project manager, working on television sets, part of the time with Sarah McCauley, now the wife of former Prime Minister Gordon Brown.

It was while working for the Reeves Foundation, a charitable institution in the City, that Mrs Brook was made a Freeman of the City. She became involved in local politics and served for four years on Islington Borough Council, before returning to Bungay nearly six years ago and soon taking a seat on the town council, becoming deputy mayor in 2010-11, and mayor in May. She did much work towards the council's aim of achieving quality council status, a project which is now almost complete.

Singing was a hobby and she joined Bungay Choral Society, as well as getting involved in Bungay's famous Pumpkin Festival at Halloween. Craft work and embroidery were hobbies and she also collected many things, particularly china.

The funeral service for Mrs Brook will be at St Mary's Church, Bungay, on Friday, January 6.

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