Tributes to Hipperholme councillor after sudden death

Local Elections. Graham Hall.
Local Elections. Graham Hall.

Tributes have been paid to a Hipperholme and Lightcliffe councillor and former Mayor of Calderdale after his sudden death aged 63.

Councillor Graham Hall, who has served his ward since 1999, passed away on Friday after an illness.

Fellow ward councillor David Kirton was friends with Mr Hall for 33 years and said the Conservative councillor had been responsible for him first getting into local politics.

“We both immensely enjoying working on the Council and representing the people of Hipperholme and Lightcliffe.

“Graham will be sadly missed. We worked very closely together attending public meetings and working on projects.

“He was very well known in the ward and well respected in the council.”

Mr Hall was first elected to Calderdale Council in 1980 representing Northowram & Shelf ward where he served for a four year term of office.

He was then elected on two further occasions to represent the Rastrick ward first in 1987 for four year term and again in 1995 where he served a further four year term of office.

Graham was then elected in May 1999 to represent the Hipperholme & Lightcliffe ward where he served to the present day.

In 2000 the millennium year both Councillor Graham Hall and his wife Susan were Mayor and Mayoress of Calderdale.

Councillor Hall also fought two parliamentary seats for Bradford South for the 1983 and 1987 general elections he also stood as a candidate in the 1989 European elections for Yorkshire West.

Malcolm Silkstone first met Mr Hall when he was working with his dad Tommy on the fruit and veg stall in Halifax Borough Market.

“I got to know Graham when he became councillor in Hipperholme and Lightcliffe. During that time he has worked very closely with our group and on projects in Bailiff Bridge.

“He was an excellent councillor and always kept his word. He dealt with people’s problems immediately.

“He will be very sadly missed and my sympathises got to his family.”

The Calderdale Conservative Group leader Coun Scott Benton said: “Graham will be sorely missed by his friends and colleagues both with the Conservative Group and across the Council as a whole.

“He was widely respected on the Council and in the community of Hipperholme & Lightcliffe as a hardworking and knowledgeable Councillor who made a real difference to the community.

“He was well known across the Brighouse area and will be remembered fondly by many people.

“He was greatly admired, respected and well-liked by all within the Conservative Party and I would like to pass on my sincere condolences to his wife Sue and his family.”

Leader of Calderdale Council Coun Tim Swift also spoke highly of the ‘dedicated councillor

He said: “I was shocked and saddened to hear of the death of fellow councillor, Graham Hall.

“I’ve known Graham for a long time and irrespective of politics, I knew him as a dedicated councillor who worked hard for the borough.

“Graham was a lovely man, who always had a kind word to say about people. I think I speak for everyone in saying he will be sorely missed by all at the Council.

“As a mark of respect, the Calderdale flag is being flown at half-mast today and will be again on the day of his funeral.

“My thoughts are with his family and friends at this difficult time.”

Other members of Calderdale Council have taken to Twitter to pay tribute.

Calder Councillor Josh Fenton-Glynn (Labour) tweeted: “Really sorry to hear of the passing of Cllr Graham Hall. Irrespective of party he always had a kind word & wanted the best for Calderdale.”

Lib Dem Councillor James Baker (Warley) said: “Very saddened to hear that the Conservative Councillor Graham Hall has passed away. He was always a gentleman.”

The Calder Valley MP Craig Whittaker also said: “Graham was an extremely dedicated and committed Councillor who served the community with distinction during his 29 years on the Council.

“He was respected and well-liked by all of his colleagues on the Council, irrespective of Party, and was very well known across the community where his passing will be felt with great sadness.

“During his time as a Councillor he represented Northowram & Shelf, Rastrick, and most recently Hipperholme & Lightcliffe.

“In each area he build up a great reputation of working for the community and putting local people first. He will be greatly missed by many and my thoughts are with his wife Sue, and his family and friends at this incredibly sad time.”