Tributes paid to Sheffield Labour Party stalwart and community activist

A Labour Party stalwart who worked in her Sheffield community for decades has died after a long fight with cancer.
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Alison Gethin was involved in politics for 35 years and was well known as a community activist in Ecclesfield and Chapeltown.

Her friend, former Hillsborough MP Helen Jackson, described her as a ‘fighter’.

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Mrs Jackson said: “She fought for a fair deal for everyone, especially for the people of Chapeltown. She won battles to keep Chapeltown baths running, footpaths open, the nature walks area off Loundside, the advice centre, children's services, public toilets and so much more.

"She fought for the Labour Party, organising elections counting votes, attending meetings in the local community, in Ecclesfield Parish Council, in the old Hillsborough constituency, and now Penistone and Stocksbridge.

"She was held in love and respect across other political parties as well.

“Her battles were never for herself or her own power or privilege, it was always for the common good.

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"Many older folk in Stannington will know of her mother, Flora Comley's work in Stannington. She was headteacher at the infant school and equally determined to put a fair deal for everyone at the heart of that community.”

Alison, aged 71, fought against cancer for years with Mick, her husband by her side.

Mrs Jackson said: “The cancer tried and kept failing to suppress her energy and determination.

“Before Christmas when she was very poorly I went to see her not long before the General Election.

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“She said I shall hold on until the results are through and then there's Christmas. We shall miss her.”

Coun Andy Bainbridge, member for East Ecclesfield also praised her.

He said: “For the last 30 years, Alison has been a stalwart of the local Labour Party and a great help to many, many people in Ecclesfield.

"As East Ecclesfield branch chairman for 17 years, and many more years in the Labour Party, including as branch secretary, she's simply irreplaceable to Ecclesfield and almost single-handedly kept things afloat, in often choppy political waters."

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Alison leaves her husband Mick, son Peter and his family, and daughter Elizabeth.

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