Council and Rastrick Labour party share heartfelt tributes for former Mayor of Calderdale

Former Mayor of Calderdale Coun Ann Martin, pictured with Mohammad Naeem.
Former Mayor of Calderdale Coun Ann Martin, pictured with Mohammad Naeem.

Ann Martin passed away on February 25, and has been described as a "champion" of the people of Brighouse.

Ms Martin served as Mayor of Calderdale during 2013-14, helping charities such as: Calder Valley Search and Rescue, Elland Silver Band and the Heath Stroke Club.

She was first elected to Calderdale Council during the mid 1990s, and served three separate terms of office.

During her time as a Labour councillor for Brighouse, she sat on the council’s Standards Committee, Economy and Environment Scrutiny Panel and the Markets Working Party.

Ms Martin was also part of the Brighouse War Memorial (Nurses Endowment Fund), the Twin Links Committee and the Waring Green Community Asscociation Management Committee.

The Leader of Calderdale Council, Coun Tim Swift, said: “I was saddened to hear of the death of former Calderdale councillor, Ann Martin.

“I knew Ann well as a councillor, a colleague and a close friend to Coun Megan Swift and I. Ann was a passionate life-long community activist and a dedicated councillor, working hard to represent Brighouse ward and Calderdale in general.

“Ann was Mayor of Calderdale during 2013-14 and did a fantastic job serving our communities and bringing her kindness and compassionate nature to the role.

“I’d like to thank Ann for both her friendship and her years of service to Calderdale and, I know I speak for everyone at the Council to pass on our thoughts and condolences to her family and many friends at this difficult time.”

Rastrick Labour Party shared the following heartfelt message on Facebook: "We are sorry to report the sad death of Ann Martin, a former Calderdale Mayor and Labour Councillor for Brighouse Ward. Ann died in hospital in the early morning of Tuesday 25 February.

"Ann was a lifelong member of the Labour Party and was Chair of the local branch party for around twenty five years or so. She also worked for the Labour Party in various roles, including in the office of the Member of the European Parliament for Yorkshire West, and later for the Yorkshire and the Humber Regional Labour Party.

"First elected to Calderdale Council in the mid 1990s, Ann served a total of three separate terms of office representing the people of Brighouse Ward. It was during the last term of office that Ann undertook her year of office as Calderdale Mayor.

"It was only in 2017 that Ann finally stood down as Chair of the then joint Brighouse, Rastrick, and Hipperholme & Lightcliffe Branch Labour Party. She died in hospital on Monday 24th February.

"We all greatly appreciate Ann's contribution to the Labour Party at all levels, to the people of Brighouse, and to Calderdale Council.

"She had suffered from some ill health in recent years and when the branch secretary called on her last year she had expressed great frustration at being unable to be as involved as she would have liked.

"Her no-nonsense style and fighting spirit will be greatly missed."

Former councillor Peter Judge said: "I first met Ann sometime in 1988 when I came to live in Rastrick and started attending the local Labour party meetings.

"As I later became the branch treasurer, whilst Ann was Chair, we go to know each other very well.

"I also had the good fortune that when I was Councillor for Rastrick from 1994 to 1998, Ann was elected for Brighouse in, I think, 1996. During those two years we were able to work together to ensure the wider Brighouse area (including Rastrick and also Hipperholme and Lightcliffe) was well represented on Calderdale Council.

"I found Ann to be an extremely conscientious and perceptive councillor, and I know that she continued to represent Brighouse folk very well in her later terms of office.

"We have lost a great champion of Labour values and of the people of Brighouse."