Former Liberal Democrat MP David Rendel dies

We’re very sorry to report that former Liberal Democrat MP David Rendel has died. Our sincere thoughts are with David’s family at this very sad time.

Party leader, Tim Farron has tweeted:

Party President, Sal Brinton has added:

We will publish a full obituary of David in due course.

Here is how the Newbury Weekly News have reported the news:

David Rendel on Newbury Town Hall steps - Some rights reserved  by Martin TodFORMER Liberal Democrat MP for Newbury David Rendel has died.

Mr Rendel, who represented the constituency from 1993 until 2005, passed away yesterday (Monday), aged 67. He had been ill with cancer for sometime.

He shot to prominence after winning the 1993 Newbury by-election, triggered by the death of sitting Tory Judith Chaplin, breaking almost 70 years of Conservative MPs representing the seat.

He described the victory as the “the most sensational of them all” and “a thrilling victory”.

Among many other issues, Mr Rendel is remembered for his association with successful campaigns for the West Berkshire Community Hospital and a cinema in Newbury.

His support for the Newbury bypass brought him into conflict with environmental protesters, while his vote to ban hunting led to a call for his resignation among West Berkshire hunstmen.

Mr Rendel was also a Newbury district councillor and represented Thatcham north and central wards on West Berkshire Council until 2015.

Mr Rendel was born in Athens in 1949 and was educated at Horris Hill in Newtown and at Eton College; before spending 14 months as a volunteer teacher in Cameroon and Uganda.

He then studied at Oxford, gaining a degree in physics and philosophy and earned an Oxford blue as a member of the record breaking boat race crew of 1974.

It was also at Oxford that he met his future wife Sue, who became a GP at St John’s surgery in Newbury.

The couple have three sons Mark, John and Andrew, all of whom were educated at Newbury schools, and two grandchildren.

Chair of Newbury and West Berkshire Liberal Democrats, Dr Sue Farrant, said: “This is a very, very sad day and a tremendous loss to his family and his many friends inside and outside politics.

“David will be remembered for his unswerving commitment to Liberal values and for his kindness and unfailing courtesy to political allies and opponents alike. He was a man of principle and I was proud to have him as my friend and political mentor”.

Photo: Some rights reserved by Martin Tod.

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5 Comments

  • Hon Alderman Paul Thompson 17th May '16 - 12:29pm

    Gosh, was it really that long ago we campaigned for David in the by-election? What a wonderful man to work for and what a success he was. Many happy memories and condolences to his family.

  • Sue and I are deeply saddened by this. He was a good friend and was a pleasure to work with. Even though we now live in Chesterfield, I kept contact.
    He will be deeply missed by many.
    Alan & Sue Craw

  • Simon Mundy 18th May '16 - 5:53pm

    Desperately sad news about David. He was the first Liberal candidate I ever campaigned for (in Fulham!) after I joined the party in 1979. He and Sue were a wonderful team and David was a man synonymous with integrity. His quiet clear thinking and compassionate good sense will be badly missed; a great friend who deserved far better than politics gave him.

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