Tributes to ‘gregarious’ former Arun chairman and East Preston councillor

Arun District Council chairman Dennis Wilde officialy re-opening the miniature railway back in 2011
Arun District Council chairman Dennis Wilde officialy re-opening the miniature railway back in 2011

Tributes have been paid to a ‘gregarious’ former chairman at Arun District Council, who died in early December at the age of 93.

Dennis Wilde represented East Preston from 1999 until standing down in 2015. He served as chairman of Arun in 2011-12.

Pictured at the Launch of the 2012 West Sussex Community Chest at The Crabtree, Lower Beeding, then chairman of Arun District Council Dennis Wilde and his wife Enfys. Photo by Derek Martin ENGSUS00120120228161957

Pictured at the Launch of the 2012 West Sussex Community Chest at The Crabtree, Lower Beeding, then chairman of Arun District Council Dennis Wilde and his wife Enfys. Photo by Derek Martin ENGSUS00120120228161957

A minute’s silence was held in his memory at a council meeting last night (Wednesday January 9).

Councillor Terry Chapman led the tributes. He said: “Dennis was a gregarious man and many will remember he was a very kind man, loved company, loved talking and he was an engaging personality, but he was a very private man.”

He described Dennis’ great love for the sea and for the beach at East Preston.

Before moving to the area Dennis was a councillor in Guildford and also ran an export/import business. Terry repeated a story Dennis had recounted about taking a trip on the QE2 off the coast of Africa and being called ashore at Namibia as there was something wrong with some guided missile parts he had sold returning two days later.

Terry concluded: “I certainly will miss him and [his wife] Enfys, but particularly Dennis. Not only was he a colleague but he was a neighbour. He was very attached to East Preston.”

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