Community pays tribute to Ian, east Leeds’s much-missed ‘king of the road’

Ian Collinson.
Ian Collinson.
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A memorial will be unveiled this weekend to a much-missed east Leeds character who died last year in tragic circumstances.

Ian Collinson, 73, from Micklefield, was well known in the community for his friendly manner and love of long walks on paths around his home village.

Last August, however, he went missing and seven weeks later his body was found in Hartley Wood, to the east of Micklefield.

Now, following local fundraising, a memorial seat has been purchased in honour of Ian, who had learning difficulties and a number of health problems.

It will be unveiled on a grassed area at Micklefield’s Churchville House Community Centre in a ceremony that will get under way at 1pm on Saturday.

Long-time Micklefield resident Dennis Best, 71, told the Yorkshire Evening Post: “When Ian was found and the terrible news of the outcome was known, within a day people were asking if a memorial seat could be obtained and sited somewhere in the community.

“Micklefield and the surrounding communities can be proud of themselves for all they have done during this tragic episode.

“Community spirit has never been higher and we would like people to come along and remember a real Micklefield character – Ian, our very own king of the road.”

Mr Best also praised Jason White and Kevin Horner for their generosity in making a concrete base for the seat free of charge.

Free refreshments, all baked or donated by local residents, will be available in the community centre following Saturday’s unveiling ceremony, when Father David Hayes will be blessing the memorial seat.

Local councillors are also due to attend the event.

Stephen Byrne.

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