Ian Spafford

Dear Resh, Siymah and Hassan,


I worked with Ian at Gateshead many years ago as a solicitor (1993-5). It was my first post qualification job and Ian was my boss. I have an afternoon off and ended up sorting out a box of papers that have been lugged from home to home over the past three decades and came across a letter from Ian that he wrote to me after I left Gateshead to puruse love down south! It is such a warm and generous letter and I was reminded what an inspiration and support Ian was in my time in the North East.  Ian exemplifed everything that is best about local government lawyers and showed me that it had the potential for a career that surrounds you with people committed to improving the lives of the most vunerable in our communities, colleagues who have your back and can provide (sometimes much needed) laughter and joy.  I have had many colleagues pass through my life but reading Ian’s letter I wanted to share the above thoughts with him and let him know that he helped steer me down a path that has brought much professional satisfaction.  Anyway, it turns out it is too late. You will know all the amazing bits about your husband/dad but I guesss you can add my little piece to the jigsaw. I am sorry for this loss but take comfort that Ian was so warmly thought of.


Fast forward 26 years later and I am a Crown Advocate for the Law Officers of the Crown in the Bailiwick of Guernsey specialising in Children and Adoption law (in part thanks to Ian). I have been off to France to re-qualify (Guernsey Law being based on French Norman law!) and the beautiful girl I was dating when I worked with Ian is now my wife and we have two teenage sons.  



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William Michael Simmonds

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