12:18PM, Friday 13 November 2020
Tributes have been paid to the chairman of the Maidenhead Labour Party who has died following a two-week battle with COVID-19 in hospital.
David Knowles-Leak died in the early hours of Monday morning at the age of 75.
Friends described him as an enthusiastic and dedicated man who was a ‘fan of fairness’ in society.
Fellow Labour member Pat McDonald said: “Even if he didn’t always agree with some of the things coming from on high, he was dedicated, got behind and always worked his heart out for the party.
“He was a driving force in trying to get elected politicians to always act in an above board manner.”
The 75-year-old was admitted to Wexham Park Hospital on Sunday, October 25 after suffering from a cough and a cold which had left him feeling like he’d been ‘hit by a train’.
He posted regular updates from his hospital bed on social media but was moved to the hospital’s intensive care unit after his condition deteriorated on Thursday.
His son Mike, from Cookham, said politics had always been his biggest passion, outside of his family, and that desire to introduce change led to him standing for election at Maidenhead’s Riverside ward in the last local elections.
Mike said: “He ran for the council as a Labour member knowing full well that he wouldn’t get voted in but he wanted to do it anyway to try and get his message across.
“Dad took that on as a bit of a challenge and he jokingly said to me one of the reasons he wanted to be involved at the Labour Party was so he could have a pop at Theresa May when she was Prime Minister.
“In all seriousness, he liked being in a position to try and change policy and drive policy.”
David, who lived in Grosvenor Drive with his partner Di, could often be found chatting with friends over a drink at The Thames Hotel in nearby Ray Mead Road.
He also served as a governor at the Windsor Forest Colleges Group and was actively involved in the Thames Valley Local Enterprise Partnership and Federation of Small Businesses.
Mike added: “He was a very social person and always willing to have a chat with anyone, especially over a pint.”
David was also a lifelong Leeds United fan and took great pride in the club’s promotion back to the Premier League earlier this year.
The Maidenhead Foodshare charity also paid tribute to him describing him as a man of ‘diverse talents’ who was a friend of many.
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