Dedicated Lion described as “phenomenal” dies aged 71
- Credit: Archant
A man who dedicated much of the last 30 years of his life to Bungay Area Lions Club has died the age of 71.
Peter Farrington joined the club in 1987 and was its president on six occasions, leading and inspiring members by his own example.
He helped to organise and run the Bungay Hog Fair and carnival procession, which during the 1980s and 1990s was a highly popular weekend of activities based at the Maltings Meadow, raising thousands of pounds for Lions charity work.
For the last six years the club has organised a hugely successful classic car rally at Earsham Hall, and with the help of his family Mr Farrington was able to attend the last event only a few weeks before his death.
Mr Farrington, who lived in Beccles, received a number of awards for his work with the Lions.
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In 1999 he received the Bungay Civic Award from the then mayor, Stephen Went, and just four years ago was awarded a Melvin Jones Fellowship Award - the highest honour in the Lions organisation - for his dedication and work for the Lions movement. It was presented to him by the international president Barry Palmer, from Australia.
Two of Mr Farrington’s outstanding achievements included arranging for a young girl called Megan, close to dying from cancer, to visit Harrods in London to see Father Christmas and the Christmas lights, shortly before she died.
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The second was helping one of the older Lions, Pat Sullivan, who originally came from Ireland, to find his family who he had not seen for 50 years.
At his funeral service at the Waveney Crematorium on Friday, Chris Spooner, fellow Lion and friend for 30 years, said his interaction in all their lives will be sadly missed.
He said the one word that best described him was phenomenal - “something that is impressive, extraordinary, or a remarkable or exceptional person. And that is exactly what he was.”
Mr Farrington filled many roles in Bungay Area Lions, including secretary, activities chairman, social secretary and six spells as club president. He also held the post of zone chairman, although he was always at his best when working locally for the club where he constantly excelled in his involvement with the town of Bungay, its festival and the annual carnival procession.
He became region Leo advisor and was instrumental in starting the Bungay Leos in 1988. He was proud when in one of his presidential years, his daughter Emma also became Leo president. Later he helped to set up Leo clubs in both Beccles and Southwold.
In recent years, as his health deteriorated, Mr Farrington was made a life member of the Lions movement.
His love of the Lions family was second only to his love of his own family - his wife Heather, children Darren and Emma, and six grandchildren, who he leaves.
The crematorium was filled to overflowing for his funeral service, with the congregation including many Bungay Lions and others from other clubs in the region.