Tributes poured in this week for Tonbridge & Malling Borough Councillor Jean Atkinson, who passed away on Sunday night. The representative for the Trench Ward had been suffering with a respiratory illness. She had been serving her constituency since 2007 as a Conservative.
On hearing news of Cllr Atkinson’s passing, local MP Tom Tugendhat said: “Jean Atkinson was a champion of our town, defender of her community and a very dear friend. Her fight for the people of Trench Ward in Tonbridge was unstinting, and though she was proud to be a Conservative she put people before party and always saw all sides to an argument. Her work on charities like Macmillan was tireless, and many who did not know her will notice her absence.”
Nicolas Heslop, Leader of Tonbridge & Malling Borough Council, said: “I am very saddened by the loss of Jean Atkinson, who was a great friend. She was one of the most hardworking councillors I have known – dedicated to helping all who sought her help, mainly with their housing problems.
“She loved her role as an elected representative and her ability to improve the lives of the residents of the Trench ward.
“We have all lost a very dear friend.”