Tributes paid after death of former Wellington mayor Denis Allen
Figures from across the political spectrum have come together to pay tribute to former Wellington mayor Denis Allen, after news of his death.
Councillor Allen, who represented Ukip on the ward of Dothill on Wellington Town Council, had been a key figure in the successful Shropshire ‘leave’ campaign during the EU referendum.
His friend and party colleague, West Midlands MEP Jill Seymour, said he was ‘respected by so many’ and played a huge role in the West Midlands referendum campaign – ‘leading from the front’.
“Regardless to the time of day or weather conditions, Denis would be out leafleting or street stalls working to spread the word,” she said. “I will remember our laughs and good times together."
Councillor Allen had served on Telford & Wrekin Council and as cabinet member for community services and deputy mayor, and was a founder member of Dothill Nature Reserve & Wellington Literary Festival.
He served as a regular officer in the RAF for 17 years, living and working in many different countries.
He was also a former Lieutenant Colonel in The Light Infantry, joining the 5th Battalion the Light Infantry in 1978. He married a local girl ‘Liz’ and had his home in the Wellington area for 40 years.
On leaving the RAF, Councillor Allen became a successful management consultant, working with large firms in both the UK and South Africa.
He entered politics in 1978 and the following year elected as a district and town councillor. In 1997 he was a candidate for the Referendum Party then in 2000 was elected to Telford & Wrekin Unitary Authority and Wellington Town Council.
In 2007 he was made a cabinet member and Mayor of Wellington. From 2010-2014 Councillor Allen was also chairman of the Telford & Wrekin Ukip branch.
Friends and colleagues said that ss in politics, Councillor Allen fought his illness with all his strength and willpower.
Ukip member and Telford businessman Brian Seymour, said: “I have a great respect and high regard for Denis, who would set about any task in an organised military fashion and always achieved his objectives.
“He was a cherished colleague who I will sadly miss. Like many, we always looked forward to his letters published in the Shropshire Star.”
Councillor Thomas Hoof, who represents St Georges, had worked with Councillor Allen for a number of years and described him as "dedicated" to public service.
He said: "The one thing I remember about Denis is his old fashioned wit, he was sharp and it is that sense of humour we don't have any more. He was a huge footsoldier in the referendum too."
Telford MP Lucy Allan paid her own respects on Twitter, saying: "Always courteous in political debate – sincere condolences to Cllr Denis Allen’s family."
Kevin Tanner, founder of Telford & Wrekin LGBT also paid tribute to Councillor Allen's commitment to the town's residents.
He said: "Despite any political differences, he worked so hard for the town and will be missed."
Writing on Facebook, Ukip's Telford & Wrekin branch said Councillor Allen would be hugely missed.
"Denis was a hard-working campaigner and councillor and most importantly, a good and loyal friend.
“He will be sadly missed by an enormous number of people. Our thoughts are with his wife Liz and his family."