Former leader of Bradford Council passes away

Notable politician and former leader of Bradford Council, Ian Greenwood has died.

In a career in local politics spanning four decades Councillor Greenwood was twice leader of the Council. He represented Little Horton ward from 1995 to 2012 and returned to the Council this year to represent Bolton and Undercliffe ward. He had previously served as a County Councillor on West Yorkshire County Council.

Councillor Greenwood served as the Chair and latterly Vice Chair of the West Yorkshire Pension Fund and forged a national profile in the pensions industry as Chair of the Local Authorities Pensions Fund Forum (LAPFF) representing funds with a combined value of £230 billion.

In 2013 he was awarded the OBE for services to local government.

Leader Of Bradford Council, Coun Susan Hinchcliffe, said:

“This is an enormous loss to Bradford District. For a generation, Ian was possibly the most recognisable and certainly one of the most influential figures in Bradford politics. He was immensely proud to be able to serve the people of his home city which he loved dearly and he wore his passion for the place and its people like a badge of honour.

“Ian was a pragmatic, big tent politician motivated by an overwhelming desire to bring people together to do the right thing for Bradford. His leadership transcended cultural, community and political party boundaries and his legacy and impact will be long lasting.”

Bradford Council’s Chief Executive, Kersten England, said:

“Many, many people in the Council, the pension fund and across the District in our communities, public services and businesses have worked with Ian over the years and will be sharing a huge sense of loss today. Ian worked tirelessly on behalf of Bradford bringing a unique and irreplaceable wealth of experience, wisdom and insight to his work.”

​Colleague and close friend MP Imran Hussain took to social media to express his grief. The Bradford East MP wrote:

“It is with great sadness and a heavy heart that I write about the passing of my dear friend, Ian Greenwood.

Ian was more than just a colleague, he was a close and dear friend to me throughout both the good times and the bad, and I am proud to call him so. He will be deeply missed by the all of those who met him, and my thoughts and prayers are with his family at this deeply tragic time.

For many years, Ian worked tirelessly for Bradford as a keen and devoted public servant, proud Bradfordian and supporter of the trade union movement. He was a giant of Bradford politics, leading the Council for many years, doing much to turn the City around and make life better for its residents, and his passion, experience and character leaves a huge hole that will stand irreplaceable.

His passing leaves us all poorer and is a tremendous loss to the City, the wider region and civic politics as a whole, but what will endure is his legacy of positive change across Bradford, his belief that we as a City are stronger when we all work and come together, and his drive to make Bradford an even better place.”

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