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Sir David Amess MP and The Jazz Centre UK

It is with the most profound regret – and a high degree of disbelief – that all of us at The Jazz Centre UK have heard the incomprehensively tragic news of Sir David’s untimely death.

Every one of our Trustees and volunteers would wish to extend their most heartfelt and deepest sympathies for their tragic loss to Sir David’s wife and family and the dedicated team around him who helped to further his incomparable contribution to the well-being of Southend-on-Sea.

From our opening in 2015 he was there to support our cause; hosted our first extension of premises in 2017; co-hosted our major re-launch with Sir Michael Parkinson on October 18th 2018 and celebrated it during PMQs the following Wednesday to Prime Minister Theresa May. Since then he has remained an unfailingly positive supporter of our Centre and two of our Trustees (CEO Mark Kass and Creative Director Digby Fairweather) were honoured to be asked to join his Executive Committee to further his long-time campaign to achieve City status for his beloved constituency which began its official – and joyful – activities a matter of weeks ago.

CEO of The Jazz Centre UK Mark Kass said: "Above all, Sir David was a passionate ambassador of people, their problems and their passions before policy and he was remarkable in his support not just for the Jazz Centre UK as a national organisation but as a valuable asset to the local community of Southend and beyond".

Digby Fairweather, Founder of The Jazz Centre UK, who has lived in Southend for over thirty years remembers that: “Sir David was a true friend to every constituent in Southend. His dedication to the well-being of all of us led him, at any hour of the day or night, into every avenue of activity from the most powerful to the most humble. He was always present at every gathering to encourage, to support and to inspire and his smile alone could illuminate the room. I know I speak for every member of The Jazz Centre UK – and for every performer of our music in or beyond the Borough who had the good fortune to know Sir David Amess - in saying that we will have the greatest personal difficulty in coming to terms with this unforgivably cruel and tragically premature death of a great man who was both an inspiration and a friend to us all".

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