Robin Sheepshanks

Robin Sheepshanks, who has died aged 81, was involved in public service to the people of Suffolk in a career spanning four decades. A former chairman and leader of Suffolk County Council, he was chairman of the police authority for eight years until 1993.

Robin Sheepshanks, who has died aged 81, was involved in public service to the people of Suffolk in a career spanning four decades.

A former chairman and leader of Suffolk County Council, he was chairman of the police authority for eight years until 1993.

A deputy Lord Lieutenant, he was made CBE in recognition of his remarkable contribution at all levels of local government.

Capt Sheepshanks was elected to the former East Suffolk County Council


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in 1964, and then following reorganisation in 1974 became a member of Suffolk County Council.

He was leader of the council from 1978 to 1981 and chairman for two years until 1984. He was chairman of the Suffolk police committee from 1985 to 1993, and initiated the Sheepshanks Trophy in 1991 to reward outstanding service to the public by a member of Suffolk police.

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Capt Sheepshanks, who was born in 1925, served in the army until returning to his native Suffolk to take over the family farm in 1952. In that year, his eldest son, David, now the chairman of Ipswich Town Football Club, was born.

Tributes were paid yesterday following the announcement of his death after a long illness. Charles Michell, Suffolk County council's chairman, said: “Robin was a gentle-mannered and highly respected figure whose enthusiasm and good nature in everything he did set an example to everyone engaged in public service.

“His record speaks for itself. We shall miss his natural warmth and generous spirit but we shall remember his dedication to public service and for the huge contribution he made to the life of our county.”

Capt Sheepshanks died at his home, at Eyke, near Woodbridge, leaving a widow, Lilias, and four sons, David, Rick, Andrew and Christopher.

There will be a private funeral followed by a memorial service in Woodbridge in June.

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