Tributes pour in for Havering’s ‘larger than life’ Rise Park activist Terry Hurlstone
PUBLISHED: 17:00 19 March 2020
Rise Park’s dedicated activist Terry Hurlstone has died at the age of 80.
Terry, of Garry Way, died at Queen’s Hospital in Rom Valley Way from an infection on Monday, March 16.
He was a dedicated member of The Friends of the Earth and a committed conservationist.
His daughter, Rachel Mamoni said: “Having fallen ill over the last seven years to cancer, he gave it a good fight.
“He will be sadly missed as he had a larger than life character and old fashioned eccentricity about him.
“Romford will certainly be a lot quieter without Terry’s famous yodelling in the Liberty Centre (to embarrass his friends and loved ones.)”
The father-of-two was also known for chaining himself to historical buildings to save them from destruction.
Rachel said Terry is the reason The Archers pub still stands in Main Road, Gidea Park.
Terry is survived by his sister Daphne and his brother Mike, also his two children Rachel and Hugo, and a handful of grandchildren whom he loved dearly.
Rachel said: “Terry was a teacher, a father and a friend to many in his community.
“Collecting things of interest was one of Terry’s main hobbies, he loved antiques, stamps, Morecroft Pottery and interesting people.
“He was also partial to Toby Jugs and has still quite the grand collection to this day that will now be cherished by those that loved him.
“Many thanks to all those who cared for Terry Hurlstone in his last years, including the wonderful doctors and nurses at Queen’s Hospital.”
Hugo told the Recorder he was a “lovely, friendly guy”.
He said: “The great man has lost his final campaign and ended up living for a greater gallery to cheer and yodel until the end of his days.
“To me, he was just my dad - a lovely, friendly guy. He was very well known for his heckling.”
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Raised in Hendon, north-west London, Terry studied at the Brentwood College of Education in Sawyers Hall Lane before becoming an art teacher at Quarles Secondary School for Boys in Tring Gardens, Harold Hill, in 1971.
As a young activist he worked closely with future Labour minister Peter Hain, who was then a member of the Liberal Youth.
David Ainsworth from Harold Hill, said: “One remembers him being arrested and carried out by police at the M25 Public Enquiry at Langtons in the 1970s.
“In 1974 he was ejected from the Town Hall public gallery for an outburst when he objected to Havering Council electing Aldermen.
“He’s remembered for stealing the limelight at MyPlace when that building was used for a session of BBC1 Question Time.
“To make a point he shouted from his seat in the audience and would not be quiet as chairman David Dimbleby battled to retain order.
“When Terry finally finished his speech, Dimbleby said, ‘You sir certainly don’t need a microphone’.”
In 2014 Terry spoke at a major protest meeting London in support of pedestrianising Oxford Street.
“Despite his age and ill-health at the time, Terry was hauled up by his arms to deliver his speech from the top of a flat-backed truck,” said David.
“Terry stood many times at council elections and in council by-elections, without ever being elected.
“But that never dented his love for local Havering politics.
“Terry know how to work the media - and politics was never dull when Terry was in the thick of it - as he became one of Havering’s best-known political figures.”
Councillor Denis O’Flynn stood alongside Terry for Parliament in 1974, he as a Labour candidate and Terry as a Liberal.
He said: “We frequently clashed and I stole a march on him with one of his ideas to celebrate Valentine’s Day.
“We have also been neighbours for many years.
“Terry was indeed a campaigner involving himself in many issues and he got a great kick out of baiting authority, particularly the present administration.
“My condolences to his family.”