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05 April 2019

The Revd Ian Randall writes:

I WAS fortunate to know Canon Tony Williamson (Obituary, 22 March) in three aspects of his life. As an undergraduate, I canvassed and helped to get the vote out when he first stood for election to the city council. (At the count, he and the Communist candidate were the only men wearing stiff collars.) It was clear that Tony’s politics grew out of his pastoral concern for the people whose working life he shared.

Later, we were colleagues in the Cowley Team, where he was concerned that our actions should match our words.

When I moved to a fresh parish, Tony, then Lord Mayor, gave the family a private reception in the Mayor’s parlour, complete with the Mayor’s Sergeant serving drinks on a silver salver, to the awe of our young sons. Later, as governor of a church school, I had keen debates with Tony, now Director of Education, over admissions policy. Sadly, our head teacher was killed in an accident, and Tony was swiftly in school, offering support to the staff, ever the pastor.

Michael John Wilson writes: I was saddened to learn of the premature death of Caroline Mockford, whom I had the privilege of teaching at the Grove Comprehensive School, Balderton, Nottinghamshire, in the mid-1970s.

Caroline was an enthusiastic member of the various music groups that excelled at the time in the school. For me, however, it was her sense of fairness based on her musical ability which is a lasting memory. I used to “sing the register”, with pupils responding to the short tune I sang to them. Caroline’s ear caused her to interrupt me at one point, stating my task for one student was too difficult for him. Caroline was correct, I was wiser, and I thanked her for helping me.

Success in her chosen profession and service to the church gives me a happy reflection on being a small part of her education.

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