Tributes paid to Hastings community stalwart, Ian Porter

Tributes have been paid to one of the town’s main community stalwarts.

Ian Porter, who was heavily involved in Old Town Carnival Week, died last week, aged 87.

Richard Stevens, president of Hastings Winkle Club, said: “I first got to really know Ian both during my mayoral years in the 1990s and as leader of the council. Later I served with him on the Carnival Committee and was his vice-chairman when Ian chaired the Hastings Week Committee.

“Ian had been a member of the Winkle Club for many years but I persuaded him to be acting treasurer when our then treasurer had left that post.

Ian Porter. Taken in August 2011. Picture by Steve Hunnisett

"Ian demonstrated from then on his meticulous, diligent and dedicated work ethic and subsequently became the club’s much respected permanent treasurer, trustee and committee member.

"Ian’s generous and skilful contribution to the Winkle Club went far beyond the job description of treasurer. On his retirement as our treasurer for many years, he was made a Winkle Club vice-president.

“Ian invested in Hastings Old Town in every sense of the word. His contribution was by no means limited to his business interests but to many of our Old Town community events, particularly Old Town Carnival Week.

"Through the Old Town Traders Association, he instigated the High Street Traders Street Party for instance and was ever present at the highly successful beach concerts, always on hand with issuing and dealing with collecting boxes.

“Ian was always most ably supported by his wife/partner, Carol and I was pleased to be able to call them both friends.

"Hastings Old Town has lost a hugely significant figure who contributed so much to our Old Town community and beyond. Ian’s legacy to that community will be remembered for many years to come.”

Ian was recognised in the Queen’s Birthday Honours in 2014, having ben awarded a British Empire Medal (BEM).

Hastings mayor, Cllr James Bacon, said: “Ian was such a lovely man and I always had great admiration for his community spirit and for all that he did for residents, traders and visitors in Hastings Old Town, in particular is hard work in Old Town Carnival Week.

"He will be greatly missed and my thoughts and prayers go out to Ian’s family and friends during this difficult time.”