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'Very humble' and 'much loved' librarian, Ali Hopkins dies aged 55

PUBLISHED: 12:49 28 January 2019 | UPDATED: 13:31 28 January 2019

Ali Hopkins, the manager of Halesworth library has been described as “very humble” and “much loved” by volunteers and staff of the library. Picture: Contributed by Halesworth Library

Ali Hopkins, the manager of Halesworth library has been described as “very humble” and “much loved” by volunteers and staff of the library. Picture: Contributed by Halesworth Library

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Tributes are flowing in following the death Ali Hopkins, a beloved member of the Halesworth community.

There has been an outpouring of affection and admiration after the mother and grandmother passed away from cancer on January 7, aged 55.

The manager of Halesworth library has been described as “very humble” and “much loved” by volunteers and staff of the library.

Alison Britton, chair of the trustees of the Friends of Halesworth, said: “She very much underestimated the impact she had on those with whom she worked and the customers who she always treated with such respect and warmth.

“Ali always gave help and friendship to all her colleagues, acting as formal and informal mentor or buddy to many across the library service.”

Mrs Hopkins was born and raised in Lowestoft and attended Kirkley High School.

At the age of 17, she embarked on her career with the Suffolk Library Service at Lowestoft library in 1980.

“She became a member of a very young team there and dealt with everything with a smile and humour, always taking her turn in tea-making duties for senior managers,” she added, “she never ducked difficult tasks, and supported managers during tough times.”

In 1996 Ali helped move Halesworth library to its current location and hand-selected new books, planned the layout and got the building ready to open its doors.

“She was rightly considered to be one of the best library managers in Suffolk,” Ms Britton added, “She took on the challenge at Halesworth with dedication, common sense and always humour.”

As a mark of respect the library closed their doors on January 8 and posted to Facebook, “Ali never wanted the Library to shut for any reason, but we know she would understand why we must do this.

“RIP lovely Ali, we will all be striving to keep the Library running to the high standards you set for us. You created a great team of staff, volunteers and valued customers.

Many people have signed a book of remembrance in the library which will be passed on to her husband David, and her children Justine and Rowan as well as her one-year old grandaughter Scarlett.

Her funeral will take place at Waveney Memorial Park and Crematorium on Thursday, January 31.

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