Basildon councillor dies after long illness

A Basildon councillor has died after battling illness.

The flag at Basildon Borough Council will fly at half mast as a sign of respect to Pauline Kettle, who was in her 60s and had reportedly been ill for a number of months.

The council’s Twitter account announced Cllr Kettle, who had represented Nethermayne ward for the Independent Group since 2019, had passed away, yesterday afternoon (May 31).

The statement read: “We’re sad to announce the passing of Cllr Pauline Kettle, who has proudly represented the Nethermayne Ward since 2019.

“As is council protocol, the Basildon flag will fly at half-mast over the Basildon Centre, temporarily replacing the Ukrainian flag till after her funeral.

“We thank Pauline for her public service and send our condolences to her family and those that knew her.”

Independent Group leader Kerry Smith (Nethermayne) said: “She was a stalwart bread-and-butter type councillor, get on with the case work, she never went out looking for the limelight. That was the sort of councillor Pauline was, she just got on with the work.”

A post from council leader Andrew Baggott’s Facebook page (Con, Burstead) read: “Whatever colours we represent, we’re all here because we want to make a difference to better the lives of Basildon’s residents.

“I send my sincere condolences to Pauline’s family and friends, and thank her for the time and effort she dedicated to public service.”

The Facebook page of former Labour leader of the council Gavin Callaghan said in a post: “I’m very sorry to learn of the passing of Cllr Pauline Kettle of Nethermayne. Pauline had been very unwell for a long time, but despite her long-term illness she was a doughty champion of her residents.

“When I was leader she would often grab me in the corridor to ask me to look into certain issues in her ward or to give certain officers a ‘nudge’ on making a decision. The issues weren’t massive, but they were very important to her residents”.

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Charlie Ridler

Local Democracy Reporter