Updated: Nov 20
LEEK has been left stunned by the sudden death of another of its finest, James (Jimmy) Lockett, a serving officer with Manchester Police and founder of Leek TV.
The married father-of-two passed away at his home last night (Nov 18), aged 45.
His death comes only weeks after the loss of his father, Alan, another popular figure in the town and, like his son, an avid follower of sport.
Best known as 'Jimmy' or 'Locko' to those close to him, Jimmy is being referred to by many as a 'Leek Legend.'
It 's a fitting description of a man heavily involved with the local community right up until his death, from interviewing townsfolk for his beloved Leek TV to fundraising for worthy causes close to his heart.
Jimmy had planned to raise money for the Douglas MacMillan hospice, in Stoke-on-Trent, by taking part in this year's London Marathon, but Covid-19 scuppered his trip to the capital.
To compensate, Jimmy instead took part in last month's 28-mile challenging Three Wonders of Leek event
It involved a ramble around Rudyard Lake and Tittesworth Reservoir, followed by a climb over The Roaches, before concluding for liquid refreshment at the Blue Mugge pub in Leek.
Jimmy was heavily involved in non-league football and was a Leek Town FC official. He was also a regular at the bet365 stadium as an avid Stoke City fan
Leek Town FC manager Neil Baker today described Jimmy as a 'phenomenal guy'.
He said "He was fun-loving and involved in everything. Nobody was quite sure how he managed to fit it all in.
"He was a steward, he was a supporter, he did a bit of everything at the club.
Neil added: "His death at such a young age is an absolute tragedy, especially leaving behind a young family".
Leek Town FC chairman Jonathan Eeles added: "Our thoughts and condolences are with his wife Glenys, children Jemma and Joe, and his wider family."
Leek CSOB FC chairman Steve Rutter: "A huge character and did so much to promote Leek and helped so many people."
There have been many, many more tributes including from LASAR Radio founder John Barratt: "A true gent, hard working family man and sports ambassador, internationally, nationally and locally," he posted on social media.
Gavin Lockwood: Jim was truly the nicest bloke you could ever meet. He was so kind and funny . . and for me a big piece of Leek's heart."