Canterbury Labour Party is devastated to announce the sudden death of Councillor Gill Gower, 65, Member for Westgate Ward.
Councillor Alan Baldock, Leader of the Labour Group, said “this is such terrible news. Gill was a key part of the Labour family here in Canterbury and just settling into her role representing the people of Westgate. She believed passionately in green issues, in the need to fight to ensure our most vulnerable had a voice, and will be terribly missed”.
Rosie Duffield, Labour MP for Canterbury, said “Gill has been a wise and kind friend to me over many years. This is a great loss, not only for me personally, but also for our community, who have lost a hard working and dedicated councillor.”
Gill lived in Canterbury for 30 years and had three children and two step-children, who grew up locally. She was an Occupational Therapist who worked in the NHS for 30 years, managing the Occupational Therapy services at the Kent and Canterbury Hospitals and serving as a union shop steward. Before retiring in 2017, she was a senior lecturer at Canterbury Christ Church University.
Gill was elected to Canterbury City Council in May 2019, where she sat on the Regeneration and Policy Committee. She was an active campaigner, a much-loved friend to many, and a formidable woman. If there was a community group running, Gill was involved, whether it was knitting circles, book groups, or being Tree Officer for Canterbury Residents Association, and was well-known for hosting street parties. She had a warm smile, great kindness and knew when a hug was necessary. Close friend Paul Todd, Chair of Canterbury Branch, said “she looked out for others more than herself. Whenever you spoke to her, you felt like you were the most important person to her at that moment in time.”
Gill is survived by her son Nick and daughters Ellie, Hannah, Merren & Ceinwn. The family have asked for time to mourn privately. Details of the funeral will be available at a later date.
Further press requests should be forwarded to Alan Baldock via email at [email protected]