Former Hollywood stuntman and local figure dies

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A FORMER stuntman who appeared in a film with Errol Flynn and organised the Queen’s silver jubilee celebrations in East Preston has died.

Ian Lucas died last Saturday in his care home in Australia at the age of 81 after a lengthy period of ill health.

He had been a well-known figure in the area before emigrating a little over 20 years ago to Australia.

Ian was one half of Lucas and Adams Removals, based in Sea Road, East Preston, with business partner Chris Adams through the 1970s and ’80s.

Before that, Ian had rubbed shoulders with Hollywood stars such as Paul Finch and Errol Flynn as a horseman in films during the 1950s.

Ian also had a pivotal role in a milestone royal celebration in the area.

In 1977 Ian, who lived in Woodlands Avenue, Rustington, at the time, organised the Queen’s silver jubilee celebrations in East Preston.

But to many Ian was best known for running the Three Acre Nurseries, in Roundstone Lane, Angmering.

The shop sold sold a range of flowers and gardening equipment, but was also popular for its pony rides, held both on the beach and indoors at the centre.

In later life Ian met the woman who would become his wife, Joy, and together they emigrated to Kilcoy in Australia a little over 20 years ago.

After arriving at their new home, Ian and his wife started a tea shop called Dolly’s before Joy sadly died a couple of years ago.

Ian did not have children and had no close family members.

His former business partner, Chris Adams, who remained friends with Ian after he emigrated, described him as ‘absolutely dynamic in everything he did’.

Chris, 63, of Beaumount Park, Littlehampton, said: “He was the perfect showman.

“He’s done so much in his life and I have been a part of that for many years.

“He was a magnet who helped a lot of young people get jobs. I was one of those kids he helped years and years ago.

“I think to myself he gave me some really good training – I didn’t realise it at the time.”

Chris said he had since been contacted by people expressing their sadness at Ian’s death.